Cuban Refugees And Immigration Policy
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Cuban Refugee 1960-80’s experiencing changes in immigration policy
During the nineteenth century, the tradition of Cuban political exiles migrating towards the United States began. Immigration of Cubans started in 1823 when Spain was ruling the island. Many nationalist leaders of Cuba started a revolt and pursued the support of Cuban exiles in Florida and New York. In the early twentieth century, Cuban won its full independence and became an oppressive dictatorship country. In order to take power in Cuba, Fidel Castro led a communist movement in 1959 to overthrow the government of Batista. Castro captured large land holdings by attacking Batista supporters and entrepreneurs. Majority of the Cuban appeared in media as enemies of the revolution as they did not unconditionally support Castro. Many opponents of this revolution sought temporary exile in the US due to the political troubles in Cuba. These immigrants tried to get the benefit due to this political instability in Cuba. Castro's enemies were supported by the administration of Eisenhower as anti-communist freedom fighters. Some of the Cuban immigrants had contacts in the US which helped them to adjust in the new environment. They were already familiar with the American lifestyle and its culture. It is noteworthy to mention that newcomers get critical guidance in the US from the bulk of exiles who had arrived earlier. These exiles helped them to enlist in the federally funded Cuban Refugee Program in order to get free food and health care services. Satisfactory behavior of the Cuban refugees encourages US politicians to made effective changes in the immigration policy in order to help Cubans to adjust them in American society.
Cuban immigrants took advantage of the political condition of the US after the cold war. 119,922 Cubans migrated to the US between 1959 and 1962, which is considered as peak immigration season. It is notable to mention that majority of these immigrants were primarily of Cuba's elite including cattlemen, sugar mill owners, professionals, representatives of foreign companies, big merchants, and executive and owners of firms. Some of these immigrants entered the US through a secret US program named as "Operation Pedro Pan", while others came indirectly from other countries such as Canada. Upon arrival in the United States, many Cuban immigrants face difficulties as they did not have any resources.
Immigration policies for Cuban refugees 1960s-1980
The country of the United States of America has a long history of accommodating refugees from different parts of the world. This form of consideration eventually makes it essential to critically examine different perspectives in the form of immigration policies for refugees. When it comes to the identification of the significant forms of immigration policies for immigrants set by the United States of America than immigration policy for Cuban refugees is one critical aspect of consideration (Clark 363). It is worthy to mention that the time period of 1960s-1980s has its strong significance when it comes to the exploration of the changing perspective of immigration policy specifically in the case of Cuban refugees. Critical consideration of the refugee policy development and changing domains in this perspective eventually helps to analyze the existing association between the countries of the U.S. and Cuba. The government and other legislative institutions of the United States of America attempt different forms of attempts in the form of policy changes in case of immigration policy for the Cuban refugees. The main focus of this form of consideration is to evolve the relationship between these countries in the form of the adoption of various reforms. Identification of the approach of reform in the form of immigration policy change for Cuban refugees is essential to make the better inference that how this form of change impacts the lives of the Cuban refugees. The perspective of the policy change in the form of immigration policy for Cuban refugees is also helpful to make better inferences about the attempts of U.S. to attain and sustain a better developing relationship with the less developed countries such as Cuba.
Identification of the particular problems associated with the perspective of Cuban refugees is essential to make better inferences about the approach of change of immigration policy. The growing concern of security made it necessary for the Cuban citizens to seek political asylum in different parts of the country (Hughes 187). This particular approach was the main prospect of consideration related to the overall approach of the immigration policy of the U.S. specifically in the case of Cuban refugees. The arrival of hundreds of thousands of Cuban refugees in the country made it essential for the government of the United States of America to reconsider the approach of immigration policy regularly to ensure better reforms and line of action for the Cuban refugees. Different practical aspects play a critical role in the overall domain of settling refugee policy for Cuban immigrants. There were plenty of Cuban citizens who illegally entered in the land of the U.S. and asking for the protection. It was one challenging prospect for the government of the U.S. to ensure better reforms to effectively deal with the issues concerning the refugees. The approach of the historical domain helps to identify that a huge number of refugees entered the country of the United States of America who was recognized as the “boat people.” Cuban exodus was the critical attempt that linked with the overall perspectives of the approach of immigration policy for them. This form of consideration eventually causes an extensive transfer of Cuban people to the land of the United States of America. The government of the country attempts to offer different forms of reforms to effectively handle the concern of immigration policy specifically for Cuban refugees. The change in the refugee policy in the form of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 was the significant attempt that changes the overall perspective of living for Cuban refugees in the country of the United States of America.
A different form of constitutional changes adopted by the legislative entity of U.S to ensure better life of Cuban refugees in the host country. A critical exploration of the impact of policy change is effective to identify actual changes experienced by Cuban refugees under the social, cultural, and economic perspectives. When it comes to the exploration of the particular policy change in the form of immigration policy for Cuban refugees than the approach of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 can never be ignored. Undoubtedly, the legislative perspective of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 immensely influenced the lives of Cuban immigrants. The significance of this form of policy change was crucial because it eventually permits Cubans to become the permanent residents in the country of the United States of America if they had been living in the country for at least 2 years. This form of policy advancement is one significant form of development considering the overall perspective of the immigration policy for the Cuban refugees. The main aim of this form of policy reform is to provide better security prospects for the ones who take shelter in the country as the Cuban refugees. It is important to indicate that certain eligibility criteria were set by the government of the United States of America to offer the option of permanent residence to the Cuban refugees. Adjustment of status set by the legislative authorities to ensure the better form of living for the ones who are characterized as the Cuban refugees in the country. This form of practical implication in the form of immigration policy reforms for Cuban immigrants provides better humanitarian relief to the Cubans who were suffered due to the facet of political refugees. Provision of relief for the Cuban refugees was the basic aspect of concern that turns as the prominent reform in case of immigration policy for refugees who originally belongs to the land of Cuba.
Significance of changes in Cuban refugees’ immigration policies
It is mandatory to identify the actual impact of changes in the immigration policy in the case of Cuban refugees. This form of consideration eventually helps to determine better outcomes about the actual position of Cuban refugees in the country of the United States of America. Deep analysis of the change in the immigration policy for Cuban refugees eventually helps to determine the impact of change on the lives of Cuban refugees. This form of consideration closely involves the perspectives of politics and the perception established by Cuban refugees. Identification of the political condition of the country is important to identify the actual foundation of the perspective of change in immigration policy. Post-cold war was the time that question the democratic perspective of the country and make it essential for the government to adopt the approach of some forms of necessary reforms. When it comes to the approach of the reform in the form of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 than it is essential to mention that this practical domain was associated with various aspects of considerations. There was the consideration of common wisdom that was directly associated with the overall practical perspective of the policy reforms in the form of the Cuban Adjustment Act in 1966 (Duany 21). The main concern for the legislative institutes of the country was to provide and ensure a safe living environment for the refugees to attain and sustain a better position of the country at the global level. The two major challenges for the government of the United States of America were to involve the community of Cuban refugees in the form of provision of permanent residents for them and involve them in the form of the strong workforce for the country.
The approach of humanitarian involvement in Cuba established as the key factor to initiate the perspective of immigration policy reforms for them. There is a need for examining this entire perspective critically to effectively determine the actual consideration of the idea of policy reforms in case of immigration for Cuban refugees. The significance of the policy changes can observe in both paradigms of past and present to figure out the actual implications of the actual idea of policy formulation. The Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 mainly established as the significant attempt to ensure the better form of anti-Cuba weapon with the adoption of unique privileges for the natives of Cuba living in the country of the U.S (Brewer 47). The main purpose of the attempt of the policy change in the form of Cuban Adjustment Act (CAA) to provide necessary benefits to the natives of Cuba who lived in the country of the U.S. and want some form of relief in the form of accommodation. When it comes to the approach of the CAA from the perspective of the U.S. government than the main aspect of significance was that the government of the country was interested to successfully adjust its relationship with the world. Migration waves in the form of growing participation of the Cuban immigrants are one necessary domain of consideration in the entire scenario of Cuban immigration and relevant policy changes.
The systematic immigration program offered by the country of the United States of America to successfully figure out all the concerns faced by both the government and Cuban immigrants in the form of seeking asylum by the Cuban refugees. Involvement of different associated concerns makes it essential for the policymakers to critically examine the entire perspective and offered some valuable practical measures that eventually change the lives of the Cuban refugees in a positive manner. Proper execution of the policy execution also makes it essential to critically examine its actual implications in the lives of Cuban refugees (McBride 36). It is vital to determine how the changing perspectives in the form of immigration policy change the lives of the Cuban refugees. When it comes to the exploration of the particular impacts of immigration policy changes in the life of Cuban immigrants than social, political, and economic are three major aspects of consideration.
Impact of changes in immigration policy
In 1959, the government of Fulgencio Batista in Cuba was overthrown by Fidel Castro and his guerrilla forces. Majority of the Cuban migrated to the US as political refugees in order to get rid of the unstable political condition of Cuba. Majority of the immigrants were the members of the elite and middle class who managed to settle themselves in Florida. The United States found the urge to reform their immigration policy due to the growing strength of the civil right movement on the other end. At that time, the national origins quota system was being practiced for immigrants in the US. In the meantime, African Americans were fighting against discrimination and inequality through civil right movements. In accordance with the civil right movement, national origins quota system seemed as discriminatory and backward (Lipman 62). Cuban refugees began to raise their voice against this quota system. Therefore, President John F. Kennedy made reforms in the existing immigration policy in 1963 by saying this quota system “unbearable”. However, after the assassination of Kennedy, Congress made efforts to introduce the Immigration and Naturalization Act 1965. It is notable to mention that the reforms in the existing immigration policy had an immediate and lasting impact. These reforms provided preferences to be made on various scenarios such as permanent residents, relatives of the US citizens or refugees of unrest or violence (Colomer 431). It is important to consider the significance of a new immigration policy to meet the goals of family reunification. The whole family was allowed to reestablish their lives in the US in accordance with the new immigration policy (Perez 15).
Regardless of such disadvantages in terms of economic loss, the politicians of the US made efforts to adjust these Cuban refugees. Americans had not upheld to the required standards needed to create a positive image until 1965. Therefore, the US politicians wanted to help these refugees to depict the Statue of Liberty as a nation refugees. The existing racist quota system was targeted by the domestic criticism which caused a bad impression over the US's image. In response, the political agents of the US tried to come up with an adjustment act in order to improve the image of the US. Unique privileges were provided to African Americans in the Cuban Adjustment Act (CAA) which includes a quick path to citizenship. It is notable to mention that the US had opened its doors to the population of Cuba, but it significantly disrupts the economy of the US. The Cuban Adjustment Act merged as the US financial and economic blockade (Portes, Alejandro, and Puhrmann 12). However, these reforms provide significant humanitarian relief to Cubans who were unable to get residence through other avenues. The adjustment act proved to be effective for Cuban immigrants as it showed that the behavior of Cubans is taking serious consideration in the United States. These refugees were granted greater access than other immigrants due to their familiarity and perceived similarities to the culture and values of the US. Even after a decade of the Adjustment act, very few instances of crimes were reported from the communities of Cuban refugees. Cuban adopted American traditions without any hesitation due to their familiarity with the environment of the US. Unlike other migrants who radically change the culture of America, Cubans painted themselves with American cultures, which was beneficial for Americans as well as they began to like these immigrants.
Although, Cuban refugees came to the US without any resources, they handled themselves in order to adjust in the new country. Cuban's stay in the US proved that they could easily manage assimilation into the communities of the US. They were worthy of the help and deserved compensation as the collective attributes of the Cuban refugees were positive towards the US. The US reformed its policy in accordance with the positive attribute of Cuban refugees. They were offered vast assistance programs in the US in addition to an advanced process. The Cuban refugees were found cooperative in the US so they were provided with 3,500 college loans. There were also given 1,600,000 hours of English and vocational training so they can easily mix themselves in American society. The adjustment act helped fifteen thousand people to get financial assistance which exceeded standard operating procedures for normal immigrants in the US. It is noteworthy to mention that the US reinforce a holistic approach through such mutually reinforcing ideas of individuals in order to assimilate the Cubans into American society. Statistics show that the US spent more than one billion dollars on the Cuban relief program to comfort the Cuban refugees (Fagen et al. 15). The effort exerted to make Cubans successful in the US through English language training, relocation services, and housing subsidies. The impact of immigration on economic growth is positive if the immigrants are highly educated. However, the Cuban refugees were not much educated so they did not contribute significantly towards the US economy. On the other hand, the US policies regarding their development have an evident impact on its economy. The US economy suffered a lot due to the provision of free food and medical facilities to the exile of Cuba. The immigrants did not boost the performance of the US economy, but they proved to be a financial blockade.
To conclude the discussion about the approach of the immigration policy of the U.S. specifically for the Cuban refugees in the era of 1960s to 1980s. It is vital to mention that it is one critical form of policy measure adopted by the government of the U.S. to ensure the proper form of immigration approach for the ones who need protection. Cuban Adjustment Act (CAA) is one major development in the form of policy change in the context of immigration policy development specifically for the Cuban refugees. The focus of this form of consideration was to provide necessary protection to the Cuban immigrants who were interested to stay in the country of the U.S. permanently. It is observed that the facet of changes in the form of immigration policy impacts the lives of Cuban refugees prominently in a social, political, and economic manner.
Clark, Ximena, Timothy J. Hatton, and Jeffrey G. Williamson. "Explaining US immigration, 1971–1998." The Review of Economics and Statistics 89.2 (2007): 359-373.
Colomer, Josep M. "Exit, voice, and hostility in Cuba." International Migration Review 34.2 (2000): 423-442.
Current, Cheris Brewer. "Normalizing Cuban refugees: Representations of whiteness and anti-communism in the USA during the Cold War." Ethnicities 8.1 (2008): 42-66.
Duany, Jorge. "Cuban Migration: A Postrevolution Exodus Ebbs and Flows." Migration Policy Institute (2017).
Fagen, Richard R., Richard A. Brody, and Thomas J. O'leary. Cubans in exile: Disaffection and the revolution. Vol. 7. Stanford University Press, 1968.
Hughes, Joyce A. "Rethinking the Cuban adjustment act and the US national interest." . Thomas L. Rev. 23 (2010): 187.
Lipman, Jana K. "A refugee camp in America: Fort Chaffee and Vietnamese and Cuban refugees, 1975-1982." Journal of American Ethnic History 33.2 (2014): 57-87.
McBride, Luke. "An Analysis of the Differences in Response to Refugee Events: A Look into the Cuban and Ethnic Albanian Refugee Events." (2017).
Perez, Lisandro. "Immigrant economic adjustment and family organization: The Cuban success story reexamined." International Migration Review 20.1 (1986): 4-20.
Portes, Alejandro, and Aaron Puhrmann. "A bifurcated enclave: The economic evolution of the Cuban and Cuban American population of metropolitan Miami." Cuban Studies(2015): 40-63.
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