Immigration Enforcement and Fairness to Would-Be Immigrants
This chapter argues that governments have a duty to take reasonably effective and humane steps to minimize the occurrence of unauthorized migration and stay. While the effects of unauthorized migration on a country’s citizens and institutions have been vigorously debated, the literature has largely ignored duties of fairness to would-be immigrants. It is argued here that failing to take reasonable steps to prevent unauthorized migration and stay is deeply unfair to would-be immigrants who are not in a position to bypass visa regulations. Importantly, the argument here is orthogonal to the debate as to how much and what kinds of immigration ought to be allowed.
I would like to thank Jonathan Anomaly, Daniel Jacobson, and Eduardo Martinez for extremely useful comments on an earlier draft. Many thanks also to David Boonin for helpful feedback during the editing process.
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