On Tuesday, representatives with the Department of Homeland Security released two new memos saying they are going to hire 15,000 new employees to help with enforcement.
In response, business leaders went to Tennessee’s capitol to talk about the impact immigrants have on the state’s economy.
“We are here today for one reason. We are here to provide better information. I think the key part of this debate or the confusion is because we don’t have accurate data,” said Dr. Ming Wang, one of several business leaders who discussed immigration reform at Legislative Plaza.
Data released from the New American Economy shows the economic significance of immigrants in Tennessee.
According to the report, immigrants in Tennessee have a household income of $7.9 billion. They paid more than $493 million in state and local taxes and have a spending power of $5.9 billion.
Immigrants account for more than 21,400 of Tennessee’s entrepreneurs and provide jobs for more then 57,000 Tennesseans through immigrant-owned firms.
The immigrants News 2 spoke with hope exposing lawmakers to the new data will help them make better policies to help the entire community.
“I am here to share my story. I think there is a lot misunderstanding about what immigrants do and what we can offer and do offer to this country we are so grateful for,” said Fabian Bedne, who immigrated to Nashville from Argentina.
Read the full story from WKRN: “Influential immigrants talk about impact they have on Tennessee’s economy”