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Special Reports

Our most in-depth publication, Special Reports provide detailed analyses of special topics in U.S. immigration policy.

Thinking Ahead About Our Immigrant Future: New Trends and Mutual Benefits in Our Aging Society

By Dowell Myers, Ph.D.

There are two stories now being told about immigration and the future of America. Each has some basis in fact, although one is based on newer trends and is more optimistic than the other. These stories differ in their answers to three crucial questions: whether immigration to the United States is accelerating out of control or is slowing; how much immigrants are assimilating into American society and progressing economically over time; and how important immigrants are to the U.S. economy. The pessimistic story—in which immigration is portrayed as increasing dramatically and producing a growing population of unassimilated foreigners—draws upon older evidence. But more recent data and analysis suggest a far more positive vision of our immigrant future. Immigration has not only begun to level off, but immigrants are climbing the socio-economic ladder, and will become increasingly important to the U.S. economy as workers, taxpayers, and homebuyers supporting the aging Baby Boom generation. Read more...

Published On: Tue, Jan 01, 2008 | Download File

"On the Beat": New Roles and Challenges for Immigrant Police and Firefighters

By Stewart J. Lawrence

The mainstream media, conservative politicians, and even some police organizations continue to promote stereotypes of immigrants as insufficiently “loyal” to America to serve in law-enforcement jobs. Ironically, similar fears were expressed about earlier generations of Irish and Italian immigrants whose dedicated public service helped usher in the modern urban police department. Today, immigrants are once again a vital part of law enforcement as patrol officers and detectives, and in a wide range of police auxiliary roles. Immigrants are also making important contributions to local communities as municipal firefighters and seasonal workers contracted by the federal government to fight deadly and destructive wild fires. America’s streets are unquestionably safer and our neighborhoods more peaceful thanks to the growing number of immigrants available to serve and protect.Read more...

Published On: Sat, Dec 01, 2007 | Download File

Wasted Talent and Broken Dreams: The Lost Potential of Undocumented Students

By Roberto G. Gonzales Ph.D.

The current political debate over undocumented immigrants in the United States has largely ignored the plight of undocumented children. Yet children account for 1.8 million, or 15 percent, of the undocumented immigrants now living in this country. These children have, for the most part, grown up in the United States and received much of their primary and secondary educations here. But without a means to legalize their status, they are seldom able to go on to college and cannot work legally in this country. Moreover, at any time, they can be deported to countries they barely know. This wasted talent imposes economic and emotional costs on undocumented students themselves and on U.S. society as a whole. Denying undocumented students, most of whom are Hispanic, the opportunity to go to college and join the skilled workforce sends the wrong message to Hispanics about the value of a college education-and the value that U.S. society places on their education-at a time when raising the educational attainment of the Hispanic population is increasingly important to the nation's economic health. Read more...

Published On: Mon, Oct 01, 2007 | Download File

Division and Dislocation: Regulating Immigration through Local Housing Ordinances

By Jill Esbenshade, Ph.D.

In this IPC Special Report, author Jill Esbenshade finds that ordinance initiatives are correlated with a recent and rapid increase in the foreign-born or Latino share of the population, which creates the perception of an immigration “crisis.” But undocumented immigration will not be “solved” by the local ordinances that are unconstitutional, deny due process rights to renters and landlords, and foster anti-immigrant and anti-Latino discrimination.

Read more...

Published On: Sat, Sep 01, 2007 | Download File

Immigration and the Elderly: Foreign-Born Workers in Long-Term Care

By Walter Leutz, Ph.D.

Aging populations and the growing need to provide long-term care to the elderly are among the leading demographic, political, and social challenges facing industrialized countries, including the United States. As of 2004, 34.7 million people in this country had lived to their 65th birthday or beyond, accounting for about 12 percent of the U.S. population. Nearly 90 percent of the elderly population is native-born. By 2030, the number of older people in the United States is likely to double, reaching 72 million—or nearly one out of every five people. The aging of larger numbers of Americans will require significant increases in financial and human resources for healthcare support and other social services. As a result, immigrants will continue to play a significant role in the growth of the U.S. labor force in general and of the direct-care workforce in particular. It is in the best interests of long-term care clients, providers, and workers if governments and private donors foster high-quality training and placement programs rather than leaving the future of the direct-care industry to chance. Read more...

Published On: Wed, Aug 01, 2007 | Download File

Out of Sync: New Temporary Worker Proposals Unlikely to Meet U.S. Labor Needs

The temporary worker program now taking shape in Congress is unlikely to provide the U.S. economy with the numbers or kinds of workers that U.S. industries need.

Published On: Thu, Jun 07, 2007 | Download File

Dollars without Sense: Underestimating the Value of Less-Educated Workers

A recent report from the Heritage Foundation is one in a long line of deeply flawed economic analyses which claim to estimate the contributions and "costs" of workers based solely on the amount of taxes they pay and the value of the public services they utilize.

Published On: Wed, May 02, 2007 | Download File

Divided Families: New Legislative Proposals Would Needlessly Restrict Family-Based Immigration

New legislative proposals to drastically restrict family-based immigration practically ignore the social and economic benefits of the family-based admissions system for both immigrants and the native-born. Read more...

Published On: Tue, May 01, 2007 | Download File

From Newcomers to Americans: An Integration Policy for a Nation of Immigrants

By Tomás R. Jiménez, Ph.D.

The United States long has been a nation of immigrants, but its policies are out of step with this reality. Public policies with regard to the foreign-born must go beyond regulating who is admitted and under what circumstances. The nation needs an immigrant-integration policy that effectively addresses the challenges and harnesses the opportunities created by today’s large immigrant population. It is not in the best interests of the United States to make integration a more difficult, uncertain, or lengthy process than it need be. Facilitating the successful and rapid integration of immigrants into U.S. society minimizes conflicts and tensions between newcomers and the native-born, and enables immigrants to more quickly secure better jobs, earn higher incomes, and thus more fully contribute to the U.S. economy. Read more...

Published On: Thu, Mar 01, 2007 | Download File