Border Militarization Threatens the U.S. Economy

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Wednesday, President Trump authorized the deployment of military forces to the U.S-Mexico border. Militarizing the border will stifle economic growth and weaken opportunities for Latinos in this country. NALCAB opposes this decision.

Arrests for illegal border crossings have been on the decline for years and currently are near the bottom of a 40 year low. Placing National Guard Units along the U.S.-Mexico border is unnecessary and worse, will have adverse economic consequences. In September 2014, The Perryman Group released a study analyzing the regional economic impact that past military deployments in Texas have had on the state. The study found that, during periods of deployment, the impacts on the regional economy include: job losses, decreases in personal income and drops in retail sales. The president’s decision is politically motivated, is not based on national security concerns, and is simply not sound economic policy.

Particularly concerning to NALCAB is that the negative effects of an increased military presence at the U.S-Mexico border will be especially damaging to Latino communities. Over half of Hispanic people in the United States live in border states – California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. Within these states, there is a high concentration of Hispanic residents in counties along the border. Latinos are drivers of economic growth, leading in small business startups, buying power and local job creation. Our communities cannot afford to pay the price of the President’s decision, and neither can the American economy.

Rather than needlessly militarize the border, ignite anti-immigrant fervor and stifle economic growth and opportunities for Latinos, NALCAB urges President Trump to address the real immigration challenges facing this country by working with Congress to reach a permanent solution on DACA.