Expect upper class Democrats to dig in their heels against immigration law enforcement when they realize that illegal alien deportation leads to more unionized and better paid jobs for blacks. How can upper class liberal Democrats get cheap labor if the native born don't have to compete against union-breakers?
But ironically the most decisive factor in the union’s victory may have been immigration enforcement raids at Tar Heel in 2007. The raids’ immediate result, the arrest of several dozen workers, was followed by the departure of hundreds of others who feared arrest on charges of violating immigration laws.
Their exodus led to an abrupt switch in the plant’s demographics. By the time of the vote on UFCW representation, the majority of workers were once again native-born black Americans, as they had been in the years immediately after the plant opened in 1992. The News & Observer noted that the “raids may have finally sealed the union’s victory…. The 2007 raids purged the plant of illegal Hispanic workers, and left behind a majority of native workers more likely to support unionization.”2
This report examines the developments at Tar Heel and concludes that the legacy of ICE’s enforcement of immigration laws includes not only the union victory, but also a decision by Smithfield to more closely examine documents workers use to verify their legal status.
Moreover, the raids, coming after years of lax enforcement of immigration laws, also opened up more jobs at the plant for authorized workers. At a time when the national recession has compounded years of job losses in North Carolina’s textile and furniture industries, the opportunity to work at Smithfield has provided a welcome boost to authorized workers, both native-born and immigrant.
Do not expect Barack Obama, putative defender of poor blacks, to celebrate immigration enforcement actions that remove competitors for blacks from the labor market. Oh no.
We do not have enough jobs for poor low skilled workers. Immigration to bring in yet more workers to compete against our lower class is a really bad idea. Yet our elites celebrate it.
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2009 July 25 09:45 AM Immigration Labor Market|