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April 4, 2006

immigrant recruitment

Yesterday, Sen. Dick Durban of Illinois made some interesting observations in the immigration debate. He expressed concern over the lack of doctors, surgeons and healthcare workers in the Congo and other African countries. His argument was that because of the vast need for these workers in their own countries, we must be careful not to lure these skilled professionals with U.S. jobs. I'm not implying that I agree with all of Sen. Durbin's views, but he makes a good point -- because the exodus of skilled workers creates a void in struggling nations.

I think his observation probably applies to clergy, engineers, educators and other professionals as well. What can we do to avoid contributing to this crisis? We could raise up skilled professionals who already live in the U.S., help provide professional training in other countries, evaluate the needs of the other country when contemplating recruitment, etc

There are a many humanitarian and faith groups that build hospitals, clinics, churches and schools, or that actually go on medical or dental service trips, mission trips, etc. As wonderful as these tangible efforts are, perhaps we could also make less tangible investments such as sponsoring students as they study a profession in their homeland. The well-known saying is true, "give a man a fish and you'll feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you'll feed him for a lifetime."

Current immigration policy could be well on its way to tremendous change as early as this Friday. That might mean that the legal process of bringing in skilled professionals would be easier and more efficient.

But is it always responsible?

Posted by almamia at April 4, 2006 12:38 PM


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