Immigration Policies and Criminal Justice Outcomes: The Case of Cuban Immigrants in United States

November 2019
Journal of Identity & Migration Studies;Nov2019, Vol. 13 Issue 2, p2
Academic Journal
The immigration-crime nexus plays a central role in the United States' current political debate. The Trump administration's recent restrictive immigration policies are mostly motivated by the belief that immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants of Latino/Hispanic origin, contribute to crime rate increases. When assessing the potential effects of immigration policy on immigrants' behavioral outcomes, Cuban immigrants in the United States are of particular interest because until recently they benefitted from a preferential immigration policy that conferred them a special immigrant status and protected them from deportation if they broke the law. Therefore, compared to other immigrants, Cuban immigrants could be expected to have a higher involvement in the criminal justice system and be overrepresented among offenders because they did not face the crimedeterrent threat of permanent removal from the country. Based on a review of prior research and available statistical information we did not find evidence that this would be the case.


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