Almost 930,000 immigrants are currently living in the state of Washington, making it the tenth largest immigration population in the US. Because they represent such a large slice of the populace, those immigrant residents also have a massive impact on the economy of the state.
The Contributions of New Americans in Washington is the title of the report, which uses data from the American Community Survey to examine the effects of that impact. The report was written by an immigration reform advocacy group, Partnership for a New American Economy. The co-chairs are the US Department of Housing and Urban Development secretary, Julian Castro, and retired aerospace company Boeing chairman, Jim McNerney.
Over 12 percent of current Washington residents were born overseas, with just over 11 percent of the populace of Clark County being foreign born, according to ACS data from 2014. The majority of native-born Americans have either a bachelor’s degree or at least a high school diploma. Immigrants tend to be either three times less likely to have graduated high school, while also more likely to leave university with an advanced degree. Of immigrants who gained US citizenship in Clark County, almost 12 percent have an advanced degree compared to nine percent of those born in the US.
Immigrants are over-represented in both high-skilled and labor-intensive positions, according to the report. Washington immigrants constitute 55.1 percent of employees in crop production and 42 percent of housekeeping cleaners, but also 24 percent of STEM employees.