The number of undocumented immigrants living in the United States has continually declined after hitting its peak in 2007 with a total of 12 million, according to the latest study by the Pew Research Center.
The nonpartisan institute estimates the current number of immigrant population living in the country reached a record of 40.4 million in 2011, 13 percent of the total U.S. population. Of that number, 11,100,000 are unauthorized immigrants, declining since 2007 when it reached 12 million.
Migration from Mexico, the country providing the largest number of immigrants, has also fallen. In 2010, 58 percent of immigrants living without legal status in the United States were of Mexican origin. Also, there were a million undocumented immigrants under 18, as well as 4.5 million children born in the United States, whose parents were undocumented.
According to the study, about two-thirds of undocumented immigrants have lived in America for over a decade and nearly half of the community, 46 percent, are parents of a child.
Migration from Mexico declined from 2007 in part due to the increase of border enforcement and the growing dangers that come with the illicit transit to the United States. Many undocumented Mexican workers already in the U.S. have also found few job opportunities forcing them to return to their country, The Associated Press reports.
Last year, Obama extended temporary reprieves from deportation by granting ICE prosecutorial discretion and by giving young immigrants the right to earn work permits.
Should the U.S. pass the kind of comprehensive immigration reform currently being discussed by President Barack Obama and members of congress, this number would be expected to drop.