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National security is one of the essential issues that need to be addressed with all the necessary tools. National security is the source of economic, political and social stability in the United States .Immigration is a process that involves the movement of people into the country either illegally or legally. Illegal Immigration poses national security challenges that are usually seen as concrete problems that need to be addressed through better tools.  In America immigration overwhelms the efforts to screen out security threats and it also creates massive immigrant communities that always yield and incubate terrorists. This makes immigration a central issue of national security concern in United States. This paper looks into immigration issues related to homeland security.

Impact of Immigration on homeland security in America

Immigration related issues are always linked to national security and physical threat.  Illegal immigrants attract terrorism, violence, crime, drug and human trafficking that comprise the security of the United States.  Illegal immigration carry with it terrorists, criminals, drug and human traffickers who pose a threat to the citizens of the United States. As a result of unchecked illegal immigration, the federal government is experiencing an increase in convicted charges associated with immigrants who break the laws through petty theft, violence, murder, drug trafficking and other crimes. Illegal immigrants also pose political threat in the United States by forming various anti government groups, which are against the laws enforced within the country.  These groups participate in retaliatory attacks through bombing, riots and demonstrations. Activists for the immigrants exert more pressure on the government authorities making it difficult for the government to enforce laws (Fernandes, 2010)

They also pose cultural threat to the host country. Due to the large number of immigrants, they compromise the national values, norms and identity as the citizens of America by developing an under-assimilated group which upholds to old languages, cultures and customs through the media, rapid transportation and internet. Modern technology has permitted these groups to throw away their original identity so as to enjoy economic incentives such as employment. This rapid changes and improvement in technology has produced conditions that do not enforce the immigrants to put more effort to personal identity with the new culture. This has led to prohibition of national bonding ties such as loyalty, citizenship and patriotism. Voluminous immigration has had a potential impact on national social order. As a result of large number of immigrants into the county, more pressure has been exerted on the available social resources such as health, education, and law enforcement aspects. Illegal immigrants have seriously affected the rural and metropolitan healthcare centers due to their inability to pay and the unmanageable voluminous flow which cannot be supported by the systems in these centers. They have also spread out diseases that were addressed long time ago by the Americans. Illegal immigration has greatly compromised the national sovereignty of the United States. This is because it depicts that the American government is not capable to protect, enforce immigration laws and defend its borders. Illegal immigrants participate in smuggling of individuals and drugs into the country and form alliances with the domestic citizens to pose opposition to the authorities (Loucky et al, 2006).

The Department of Homeland Security was created to bring together 22 diverse organizations to assist in preventing terrorist attacks in America, reduce vulnerability of America to terrorist attack, minimize damage and assist in recovering from attacks that do occur. The mission of homeland security is to come up with a risk management strategy of reducing or preventing America’s exposure to natural disasters, violence and terror attacks. This strategy is planned in such a way to safeguard America and its infrastructure from dangerous material and persons, while mitigating the adverse consequences of disasters by improving America’s emergency preparedness and response systems (Bullock & Haddow, 2012)

Measures to Address Immigration and Homeland Security Issues in America

Enhancing border security and Reforming Immigration System is significant step in reducing terrorism. Homeland security entails border security, which includes reducing the number of illegal immigrants. Border security also involves internal enforcement by dealing with people who have already entered illegally. Porous borders attract terrorists, criminal fugitives, drug and human traffickers, gang members who pose a serious threat to the security of America and its citizens. The objective of securing the border and reforming immigration system is to deal with security threats posed by dangerous immigrants before and after they enter into America.  This calls for the American government to deploy all the vital options and tools at their disposal to prevent the acts of violence, crime and terrorism from imposed on the Americans. This will involve deploying more military within and outside America’s borders to strengthening information and intelligence sharing and gathering mechanisms so as to stop terrorism attacks before they occur. It also calls for enforcing laws against criminals, terrorists, criminals, drug and human traffickers whom have been prosecuted in America’s civilian criminal courts (Forest, 2006).

 Another essential step in securing our borders step is making the borders more secure by, vehicular fencing, building pedestrian fences, installation of high technology and deploying more manpower.  Setting up comprehensive immigration reforms is vital here so as to give officers in charge of border patrol and immigration reinforcement humble time to pursue truly dangerous criminals.  Immigration reforms involve cooperating and coordinating with other nations in terms of implementing program such as passenger data collection, biometrics and secure traveler identification.  Under concession, it is important to put in place legal immigration that entails temporary admissions, permanent based admissions such as family based immigrants and employment-based immigrants. illegal immigrants who are already in the United States can be authorize to live in the nation and make applications for visas and ultimate American citizenship. Due to a large number of immigrants in the united states who are temporary employed and they are required to leave at expiry of their period, anew immigration reform system that favors the educated, semi-skilled and the skilled English speaking  immigrants will be effected so as to permit them to apply for citizenship and visas (Givens et al, 2009).

Another measure to reduce illegal immigration is through enhanced visa security. All the immigrants seeking visas should undergo thorough screening and admissibility reviews by performed by the Department of State consular officers in the international agencies.  These reviews are performed to address issues relating to health status of the immigrant, criminal records, public charges, illegal entrants, aliens previously removed, security and terrorist concerns.  This will ensure that ineligible immigrant is not issued with admission or visas. In addition, illegal immigration can be addressed through proper documentation and verification. In issuing biometric identifiers, a top priority should be given to document integrity as well as personal identification. Also employment eligibility verification should be performed. This can be performed through an electronic employment eligibility verification program called as E-verification which examines the new hires’ employment authorization, the person’s identity and work eligibility. An employment authorization document which contains, security features, digital images, holograms, micro-printing and biometric identifiers.  Status verification on immigration status should be carried continuously to determine noncitizens eligibility for public benefits so as to reduce pressure on the available resources (Nixon et al, 2006).

Finally it is vital to set up automated entry and exit systems. The government should invest towards the installation automated systems in sensitive places of entry and exit such as the ports and airports. Total surveillance systems should also be put in place within the porous points inside and outside the country. These automated systems will help in generating automated entry and exit data that will help in prohibiting aliens, legitimate cross border traffic, disruptions of trade and tourism activities (Forest, 2006).

Challenges Facing Immigration Security Issues in America

There are a lot of challenges facing the addressing of the immigration security issues. They include inadequate resources to set up automated systems in every entry and exit point, collaboration of the domestic citizens with the immigrants to smuggle drugs, firearms and human beings into the country. The homeland security requires a huge amount of budget allocation to address all the major issues raised, this has greatly strained the tax payers’ money. Another challenge is the rise of immigrant activists who form alliances to demonstrate against the laws enforced on the immigrants, thus posing a significant effect on law enforcement (Isenburg, 2007).

In conclusion illegal immigration is a major issue of concern that poses a serious threat to national security. Illegal immigration compromises the sovereignty of United States as an independent and powerful state. Illegal immigration is a source of opportunity to terrorists, criminals, drug and human traffickers to stay in our country. This has led to the emergency of serious crimes, terrorist attacks, and pressure on the available social resources. Illegal immigration has also led to the immigrants influencing the existing American foreign policies and problem in enforcing laws. In order to solve illegal immigration problem the American government has to invest in tools and options that can exhaustively address each challenge posed by immigration right from the root.  All the tools and options put in place must focus on  mitigating the challenges presents by increasing border surveillance both physical and digital, deploying more , military personnel, investing in more sophisticated and improved technology, thorough immigrant screening, information and intelligence gathering services, reforming the immigration systems, law enforcement and enhancing collaboration with other nations. In order to address immigration problem effectively it calls for bilateral approaches and total collaboration with other international agencies.

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