October 27, 2014
The California legislature has decided it’s time to allow undocumented immigrants into professional fields which require licensing.
SB 1159 is a bill which will requires the 40 licensing boards overseen by the California Department of Consumer Affairs to disregard the legal status of applicants, and is set to come into effect by 2016.
The bill was passed with the hopes of creating new tax dollar revenue and allowing undocumented immigrants to be integrated into the professional job market.
Professionals and students alike have praised the move, along with condemnation from the anti-immigration camp.
Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform said “it’s another example of California state government just completely obliterating any distinction between people legally present and those who are in violation of federal law.”
Social Security numbers had previously been a requirement for applicants with the licensing boards, which of course illegal immigrants don’t have (an exception being young adults attaining them through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, which opened up in 2012).
The affected professions are numerous, and they include both lawyers and doctors.
Proponents of the bill expect an increase in tax contribution from the estimated 1.85 million immigrants working in California, with an estimated $2.7 billion already being contributed by the group as of 2010 state tax collections.
Many are quick to judge with malice laws granting illegal immigrants rights which are in-line to legal residents. The enduring truth is that undocumented workers are currently and will continue to be a significant portion of the workforce in California.
As a state we can attempt to submit the group into illegal transactions which subvert tax collection, decrease education incentive and generally reduce quality of life, or we can accept that they are here to stay and begin integrating them into our society.
Many are quick to look down upon anyone who broke the law and continues to break the law to live in this country, but among other points is the most prominent: when it truly comes down to dollars and cents (and sense for that matter), naturalizing and integrating those who worked so hard to make a better life for themselves in America is the best solution.
Access to professional jobs leads to incentive for higher education which leads to fewer kids on the streets being naturalized not into the professional workplace, but instead into the gangs which terrorize our cities and streets.
John Rosenbaum is an attorney in Orange County, California who is sought after his undeniable prowess in the fields of Workers Compensation and Personal Injury. If you have any legal needs, John Rosenbaum is the legal professional for the job.