Transcripts of full meetings of the council.

Thank you, Mr. President, and thank you, Councilman James Kenney and Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez, for putting forth this important resolution.

I come to speak in support as a native Californian whose hometown team, the San Francisco 49ers, just lost the Super Bowl. I come also as a third-generation American of Japanese ancestry, and, thirdly, I come as a worker and dweller in this Philadelphia region for the last 25 years.

As a scientist who has crunched numbers all his life, the census trends of the City of Philadelphia are really amazing to study. In 1950, it hit a peak of 2.07 million. It started to decline in 1970 and kept on going down to 1.5 million in 2000. Finally, after 40 years of decline, there was an uptick in 2010 to 1.526 million, about a 0.6 percent increase. Amazing. What was that due to? Immigrants, new residents in the City of Brotherly Love.

More numbers. Do you know that ever since 1970s America's fertility rate is only about 1.93? Which is below the replacement rate of 2.1 babies per mother. This has profound impacts and negative implication on Social Security and economic well-being of senior citizens in the future. Not enough workers to support retired persons.

In Japan where the birth rate decline has already come somewhat earlier, the country has already experienced decline in economic productivity rates. Due to immigration activity, America is much better off. New adult workers and higher birth rates by immigrants are offsetting the decline seen in other well-off countries.

The time is now. The declining birth rate is spreading to many other countries as their local economies get better. Studies indicate that most people want to stay in their own countries for good social reasons, especially if the prevailing conditions within their countries are getting better economically.

Thus, the immigration pressures will decline in time as the global economy improves. It is America's chance now to assure a strong future by welcoming immigrants into its fold and to avoid the doom facing Germany, Japan, and many European countries in the coming decades. We need to fix this immigration problem now, and we need to keep families together.

Thank you.

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