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Rising Immigration Suppresses - Not Increases - Crime Rates: Study

4 March 2017, 8:14 am EST By Luan Chan Tech Times
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A sociology professor's study on the impact of immigration on crime rates proves that its relationship is actually inversely proportional, as opposed to what some believe.  ( Pixabay )

Republican candidate and 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump, believes that the country's problem with high crime rates has to do with the number of immigrants it is accepting per year and, as he promised during the campaign period, he quickly drew up an Executive Order to ban or limit entry of refugees in the United States in his first week in office.

Many citizens were appalled by the President's extreme action and the Federal Justice system even temporarily blocked the Executive Order from being executed and executives from top companies even disagreed with the president's conduct. The academe, however, is taking a different approach by shedding light on the matter using facts from years of study.

Proof In Sociology

On Feb. 14, Tech Times relayed the study of Professor Robert Adelman and his colleagues who looked at data from the past four decades to find evidence that immigration plays a direct role in the rise of urban crime rates. Prof. Adelman and his team found clear evidence that suggests there is no link between immigration and crime.

Despite the clear proof, however, another team of sociologists found it necessary to give more compelling evidence by doing a meta-analysis of 51 previous studies exploring the potential link of crime and immigration. William & Mary Professor and Sociology Department Chair Graham Ousey and coauthor Charis Kubrin from the University of California-Irvine painstakingly went through all 51 studies and confirmed that no such link exists.

Profs. Ousey and Kubrin's study titled "Immigration and Crime: Assessing a Contentious Issue" will be published in the inaugural issue of the journal Annual Review of Criminology slated for release in early 2018.

The Meta-Analysis

Profs. Ousey and Kubrin were confident that the outcome of their study is definitive because each of the 51 studies looked at different variables.

"And we can say that pretty definitively because the meta-analysis draws upon so many studies and [...] we just don't find any evidence that suggests that it's making crime worse," Prof. Ousey said.

He added that there is also compelling evidence that shows a negative relationship between first generation immigrants and crime, leading to the conclusion that first-generation immigrants are actually less likely to get involved in crime and complicate their new lives.

What The Study Aims To Do

Prof. Ousey clarified that the study was not done in response to the recent immigration "reforms" but that their interest about the topic of criminology and immigration was piqued by a 2006 New York Times piece written by Annual Review of Criminology co-editor, Harvard Sociologist Robert Sampson, who proposed that the lower crime rate in the 1990s may have been caused by a surge in immigrants.

Prof. Ousey also hoped that their study would help people approach the idea of immigration logically instead of relying on unfounded accusations, which is why they focused on facts.

"[The] importance of data and analysis that tries to be careful and present a reasoned argument backed up by empirical data is important because if we don't do that, then all we're doing is essentially going along and making policy on the basis of prejudice and fear," Prof. Ousey said.

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