U.S. Law Center

What a merit-based immigration system could potentially look like

Anyone who is seeking to come to the United States to live or work in Corona, California has to meet certain criteria. While some people come to the country because of their employment, many others come to be reunited with family members who are already citizens. In a recent speech, President Donald Trump signaled his desire to move away from a family-based model and adopt a merit-based system for deciding who can come to the U.S. Here is a look at what that type of system may involve.

According to USA Today, if implemented correctly, a merit-based system could be successful. Many who are in favor of it look to Australia and Canada as examples of countries that use a point system to decide who may enter. Certain attributes, such as education, languages spoken and work experience, would be assigned points and only those with the most points would earn entrance to the U.S.

Supporters argue that by only welcoming those who can contribute greatly to society, it will strengthen the economy. Detractors point out that non-skilled workers are also important to the U.S. economy and that excluding those types of people from immigrating to the U.S. may actually harm some businesses.

In particular, construction and farming, two key industries, may suffer from a lack of workers if only highly-skilled foreigners are admitted, reports Money Magazine. That is because many Americans consider such jobs beneath them and are unwilling to accept that type of employment. Also, if a person enters the country because he or she is considered highly skilled and educated, this does not mean that they will be able to secure employment once they are here that utilizes those skills. At this point, no specific policy recommendations have been issued by the Trump administration.

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