Who Bears the Burden of proof?

Apologies in advance, my next few posts are going to be a bit behind the times, as I’ve been away so long. but there are some great articles out there that I still want to highlight – like this one by Justin Sandefur, a response to Paul Collier’s thesis (read my review of his book Exodus here) on the impact of migration on developing countries – specifically, brain drain, development and economic growth.

“I suspect many people reading this blog in Europe or North America share Professor Collier’s skepticism about skilled migration. You are not racist or xenophobic.  You are concerned about the plight of the global poor, and you welcome diversity in your community. But you worry that maybe Paul’s right.  Maybe the fate of your university-educated Haitian neighbor down the street, earning a good salary and sending her kids to good schools since moving to the UK, is a distraction from, and maybe even a hindrance to, reducing poverty in Haiti.

Before we begin, it’s important to note that we’re not really debating whether the rate of skilled emigration fro Freetown to London or Port-au-Prince to Miami is too fast or too slow.  We’re really talking about whether to deport your neighbor.  Or whether to refuse her a visa in the first place, and consign her and her family to a future of low wage employment, bad schools, and preventable disease “back where they came from.”  That is the policy proposal on the table for your consideration.

My argument is that the burden of proof here should be heavy, and it should rest on the shoulders of those who would build walls and tear apart families.  If you think the prosecution has met that burden of proof, here are three reasons to reconsider.”

Read Migration and Development: Who bears the burden of proof? Justin Sandefur responds to Paul Collier on the Poverty to Power blog.

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