Thomas U. White

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date



This study seeks to analyze the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 from an alternative theoretical perspective and to propose an alternative policy on the issue of undocumented Mexican immigrant labor. It will focus closely on IRCA and its effects on Mexican immigrant workers. Other immigration policy issues such as political asylum for Central American refugees and revisions of the current quota system fall outside the scope of this paper. Although these topics are related to the subject of undocumented immigration, they warrant separate consideration elsewhere. Similarly, this study does not purport to address foreign-policy issues such as trade and debt. Finally, this paper will not attempt to provide a strategy for meeting the needs of all Mexican immigrants, who come to the United States for a variety of reasons. As noted, the central focus is on IRCA and its effects on Mexican immigrant labor.


Latin American and Iberian Institute

Language (ISO)



Mexico, Immigrant, Labor, Policy