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It is clear that the US is finding the constant flow of would-be Mexican immigrants an increasing problem, as is shown by the fact that their Border Patrol budget increased by 180% between 1993 and 1998, to reach a total of $4.2 billion by 1999.

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It is clear that the US is finding the constant flow of would-be Mexican immigrants an increasing problem, as is shown by the fact that their Border Patrol budget increased by 180% between 1993 and 1998, to reach a total of $4.2 billion by 1999. The USA will be employing 11,000 people to guard the border by September 2002, and 17,000 by 2008. But why does America see Mexican migrants as such a problem? And why do so many people consider it necessary to emigrate from Mexico to the US, sometimes employing desperate measures? How has such a situation arisen? These are questions I hope to address in this project, in which I will use a variety of sources to try and understand more of the causes and effects of migration between Mexico and the USA It is highly unlikely that anyone would be willing to leave their home and country to migrate somewhere else unless there were valid and important reasons for doing so. These are called push or pull factors. A push factor is a negative factor that encourages somebody to leave and migrate somewhere else. A pull factor is a positive one that encourages somebody to situate themselves in that particular place. Mexico has many 'push' factors, whilst America attracts so many immigrants because of its 'pull' factors; it is has excellent opportunities, is very wealthy, has a good educational system, good healthcare and readily-available jobs, things which Mexico cannot hope to offer. Push Factors Pull factors High crime rates Good job opportunities Lack of employment Hot, sunny climate High living costs High living standards Poor education Political and social stability Poor healthcare Good healthcare War, over-population or famine Value for money Poor climate Relatives already situated there Unstable political or social environment Good education system Good healthcare The border between Mexico and the USA was set in 1848 with the signing of the Guadalupe Hidalgo Treaty. ...read more.


She says: 'The advantage of cleaning is that no matter how bad times are, I have my job.' This is evidence of a point made earlier on in the project, about that fact that jobs in Mexico, although more plentiful than many people would expect, are not often stable, and even permanent jobs like teaching ones can easily be lost should the school not be able to continue running because of lack of funding from the government, something that is becoming an increasingly frequent occurrence because of Mexico's declining economy. Many women that enter the USA illegally end up having cleaning jobs. When the immigrant is young, live-in work as maids or nannies is especially popular because it means that the worker has a place to stay. Live-in work is an especially common first job for young undocumented migrant women like Teresa. She came to the US in 1990 with $50 in her pocket, hoping to earn money to send back to her mother and younger siblings in Mexico. She took a job as a nanny and housekeeper. She explains: 'For the people that don't have papers, like me, it's the only job that they can find that will accept them.' Wages for live-in work tend to be low: the average weekly pay is $135 for an average of 45 hours of work - $3.00 per hour, far below the Californian minimum wage of $5.75. Live-out housekeeping, or 'job work', tends to pay better and can be done by women with their own children. Most workers earn on average $40 to $50 for the five to six hours they spend cleaning each house - above the minimum hourly wage, but the annual incomes of even the busiest domestic workers are below $10,000 (the US poverty level for a family of four is about $15,000). However, neither Teresa nor Lourdes regret their decision, the fact that they have enough to live on, and sometimes something to spare, is something which they would not have been able to experience back in Mexico. ...read more.


an opportunity for more labour and a way to target their ageing population; and by collaborating with Mexico to develop strategies and initiatives to combat immigration in a long-term way, maybe by aiding Mexico's economy and providing incentives for Mexicans to remain in Mexico, they would probably find a solution that would benefit both countries. Instead, it is spending a huge amount of money on trying to stop immigrants from crossing the border, which is only a short-term solution. Also, American to not seem to realise that the immigrants that many people wish they could be rid of, but are employing in their homes and workplaces for menial jobs, are now an essential part of the American economy, and the US could not function smoothly as a country without them. Life for Mexicans when they settle in the USA is often of a much lower standard of living than for most Americans, and many immigrants lie below the USA poverty line, but it is still a life that, for many of the migrants, is much better than the life that they used to lead back in Mexico. They also hope to provide a better start for their children, who will receive a better education and hopefully go on to have a better career and a higher standard of living when they grow up than their parents did. The fact that many people are leaving Mexico is also aiding those left behind, they have more job opportunities and they generally have a better standard of living because many people that emigrate to America send back money to their relatives in Mexico. To write this project I used a variety of sources. These are the main websites that I used: * www.oneworld.org/ni/issue305/maid.htm * burn.ucsd.edu/archives/raza/1998.01/msg00000.html * www.us-mex.org/borderlines/2001/bl84/bl84ak.html * http://www.ins.gov/graphics/aboutins/statistics/msrdec01/SWBORD.IITM * www.stpetershigh.stoke.sch.uk/departments/geography/gcse%20at%20st%20peter's/ p+ptl.htm I also used the sheets given in class with articles from various newspapers including: * The Detroit News * The Independent And other sheets with maps printed on them, also geography book 'Connections'. Introduction: pg. ...read more.

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