Recent Findings on Immigrants in the US

NewsImageStudies on US Immigration have recently been publishing, giving some new insights into lives of immigrants in the US. Researcher Jacob L. Vigdor from the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, for example, has been researching immigration in the US through 2009. He concludes that immigrants to the US in 2008 and 2009 were more likely to be affected by the recession than US-born residents. Some immigrants, for example, were not able to leave their home countries due to economic problems. Those US immigrants who were less assimilated into US culture were more likely to leave due to financial pressures than those immigrants who were well assimilated. New arrivals were also more likely to leave than immigrants who had been in the US for some time.

According to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times, the recession may be affecting public perception of issues related to the US immigrant as well. In 2007, 11 percent of polled Americans saw US immigration as the most pressing problem facing the nation. In 2011, only 4 percent feel that way. The slow economic recovery from the recession means that fewer immigrants are coming into the US and most Americans are more concerned about economic woes than about new arrivals in the US. As well, the USCIS processing fewer new arrivals and with many newer arrivals leaving, the immigrants who remain tend to be long-term immigrants who have assimilated well into the society in terms of language, culture, education, and employment. Therefore, the differences between immigrants and US-born residents is smaller, which may lead to more cooperation.

According to the report from the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, US immigration compares quite favorably with immigration in other nations. US immigrants are more likely to own their own home, become naturalized citizens, and hold a job than immigrants to European countries. As well, while the US worries about undocumented workers from Mexico, the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research shows that Europe is also worried about illegal immigration from the Middle East and North Africa; worries that have also resulted in social anxieties and new controversial legislation in Europe.

According to the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research report, origin country is very important in terms of the fate of a US immigrant. Immigrants from Asia and Canada, among other regions, fare very well in the US and are more likely to assimilate and become naturalized citizens. US immigrants from Latin America, according to the study, face more challenges.