Millions of illegal immigrants chose to return to Mexico of their own accord in the 2010s, according to reporting by The New York Times.
According to the report, illegal immigrants are mainly choosing to return back to Mexico due to an unfavorable economic environment in the United States as well as immigration crackdowns that took place under the Trump administration.
“There’s a lot of people leaving the country, and they’re leaving voluntarily,” Robert Warren, a senior visiting fellow at the Center for Migration Studies told the Times.
According to the Times, the U.S. population of illegal immigrants from Mexico has dropped from 6.6 million to 4.4 million between 2010 and 2020.
Immigration has long been a hot-button issue in American politics. A 20-year study from UCLA social demographer Anne Pebley has helped predict who is most at risk for deportation. @UCLAFSPH @CCPRatUCLA https://t.co/nZhLQWEoZL
— UCLA (@UCLA) February 22, 2023
Self-deportation accelerated in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, according to research by UCLA. Illegal immigrants returned Mexico due to the cool American economy and an improving economy in Mexico. Increasing anti-immigrant rhetoric during the Trump administration also had an impact, though economic concerns had a bigger impact.
Illegal immigrants opting to return to their countries of origin due to shifting economic conditions is not unique to Mexico. According to the Times, the number of illegal immigrants from Brazil and Poland in the U.S. also substantially decreased when economic conditions improved in those countries.