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Latin American immigration slows in United States

Immigration has slowed, decreasing the proportion of Latin Americans in Florida and nationwide. According to new research, immigration had its smallest increase in a decade and the increase of 400,000 immigrants was the smallest number in a decade. The overall proportion of Latin Americans fell from 54 percent to 52.6 percent last year. The number of immigrants from Asia and Africa rose, in comparison.

A new study found that the largest flow of immigrants from Mexico has ended and may actually have reversed. Analysts suspect that certain trends have changed northbound migration, including the crisis in construction, increased vigilance at the border, and stricter immigration laws that have forced a greater number of deportations.

Poverty rates in the United States may also point to signs that the living conditions for immigrants are not as appealing as they once were. The poverty index rose from 15.3 percent of the population in 2010 to 15.9 in 2011. This means that there are 48.5 million people living in poverty in the U.S. The annual average household income fell from $51,144 to $50,502. There is also a record 13 percent of U.S. homes receiving food stamps. When comparing national statistics to the Hispanic population, 25.3% were living below poverty level.

Hispanic families are more likely to suffer from hunger and poverty than other groups, according to reports. The poverty levels and lack of work have impacted immigration rates nationwide. Still, changing immigration laws could improve opportunities for immigrant families to secure a life in the United States. While the government is making cuts to specific programs, many immigrants can benefit from existing immigration laws. An experienced attorney can help you explore your rights, establish residency or citizenship and successfully adapt to life in the United States.

Source: Fox News, "Immigration Slows, Lowers Proportion of Latin Americans in US," Sept. 21, 2012

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