Often in the debate of what to do with the approximately 11 million undocumented people that live in the United States, we hear the notion of “getting in line” and “following the law”. Most Americans, understandably so, do not know what it takes to immigrate legally therefore, by definition, they are not aware of the details of the law that is asked for others to follow. The following info graphic is an attempt to simplify what it is in reality a very complex system. There are two takeaways from this piece which emphasize the need of comprehensive immigration reform:

If you are an “unskilled” worker (i.e. do know have a college degree in high demand) and you do not have relatives already in the United States, it is virtually impossible for you to immigrate to the country legally regardless of the existing need for your services in fields such as agriculture, services, etc.

If you are lucky enough to have relatives already in the country or a company willing to pay thousands of dollars and wait several years for the paperwork to come through, you will still have to wait considerable amount of time (years or even decades) for you to be able to immigrate. This system, implemented in the mid 1960´s simply does not match today´s economy needs and its impact will increase as the U.S. Population continues to age.

via INFOGRAPHIC: Getting in Line: Understanding the U.S. Immigration Process – Council for North American Policy.