March 7, 2011
March 7, 2011
With California’s unemployment rate as high as 12 percent, it’s not the first time people are blaming undocumented immigrants, but the group Californians for Population Stabilization (CAPS) recently launched a TV commercial in the Bay Area arguing that legal immigrants are also a major factor in California’s high unemployment rate. CAPS is calling for lower levels of legal immigration and temporary workers until the economy improves.
The TV ad, called "Ill-Legal Workers," was launched in the San Francisco area and is being rolled out in the rest of the state, reports the Sing Tao Daily. At the beginning of the ad, the word "ILLEGAL" is shown, and a man says to the camera, "Now that so many Californians are out of work, attention is turning to the millions of illegal workers in the state. It’s about time." Then the man separates the word into IL and LEGAL, and says, "But what about these workers? Legal foreign workers. One million legal immigrants and temporary workers our government admits every year. They take good jobs in places like California, no matter how many Californians are out of work or how ill the economy gets. We need to slow legal immigration ’til California is working again."
The ad was first broadcast in San Francisco because the city has a high immigrant population. This week CAPS is expanding the ad to Bakersfield, and is planning to launch it in the rest of California over the next four months. Jo Wideman, executive director of CAPS, said they chose Bakersfield because the city’s unemployment rate rose to 18 percent last year.
When asked about Silicon Valley, where a survey on high-tech start-ups found that one in four of the founders are new immigrants, CAPS Chairman Marilyn DeYoung said that although these immigrants create job opportunities, it’s still too little to improve the unemployment rate in California.