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Saturday, September 15, 2007

Should people migrate or stay?

This is a question that many young professionals face at some time in their career while living in Jamaica. Some simply say, "I am sick of living in Jamaica." Well, a sentiment that can be stated by anyone in any country that they have lived in their whole life.

I believe that many times the feelings of desertion are felt when relatives or friends return from (Foreign) aboard and bring back stories of streets paved with gold or suitcases bearing so many gifts they can barely close. This leads so many Jamaicans to believe that they will be so much better off living in the United States, Canada or England. What they fail to mention is the transitional stage when entering any of these countries.

First there is the acclimation process. This happens when you migrate to any new place. You have to adapt yourself to the lifestyle and various cultures. I know many that can tell you the "opposite" story to the streets of gold and the wonderful life a foreign. They can tell of the prejudice, how hard it is to find a place to live, a place of employment and sometimes even social acceptance. There are times sponsors that bring people from Jamaica to these countries abandon them. So they are in a foreign country with little to sometime no resources.

If they entered the country illegally, they are at the mercies of folks who "wheel and deal" to get them documents that allow them to stay in the United States. Often times these documents are not legal.

My own personal thought is that if Jamaica starts having large migrations to other countries that it will hurt the local economy and way of life.

The solution hopefully lies in the new government. It is so important to make life better for it current residents. Providing employment and adequate wages is vital. A feat that will indeed be a challenge. Years of corruption has changed Jamaica immensely.

A professional who moves to the US without understanding whether or not their training and education will be accepted is also not planning properly. Sometimes a man leaves the frying pan and jumps right in the fire.


Graham said...

Thousands of young South Africans go to England for the same reason. 99% come back within a year, and most of them "broke". It is but a handfull that bring back something. All is written off against "experience"

iriegal said...

Graham, this is indeed sad. I know people have the tendency to want something better for themselves in life, however they need to investigate before they take that leap.