Source: United Nations
International Migration Policies 2013 wall chart provides up-to-date and objective information on Government views and policies on immigration and emigration for all 193 Member States and three non-Member States of the United Nations. On immigration, it includes information on policies on major types of migration and migrant integration. On emigration, it includes information on policies to encourage the return of citizens and policies on diaspora matters. The wall chart also includes information on estimates of international migrant stock, female share of international migrants, net migration rate, and remittances. (12 MB)
Data Table (Excel)
Remaking the US Green Card System: Legal Immigration under the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013
The legal immigration system proposed under the Senate’s comprehensive immigration reform legislation would retain a strong emphasis on family unification while growing skills-based immigration more than fourfold, contrary to the perception that a new focus on employment-based immigration would come at the expense of family-based immigration. This issue brief examines how the Senate bill would reshape the legal immigration system through its admission policies, creation of a new merit-based visa stream and points-based system, and re-ordering of the balance between permanent and temporary visa programs. It also offers some estimates of future flows, where they can be determined.
Immigrants Contributed An Estimated $115.2 Billion More To The Medicare Trust Fund Than They Took Out In 2002– 09
Source: Health Affairs
Many immigrants in the United States are working-age taxpayers; few are elderly beneficiaries of Medicare. This demographic profile suggests that immigrants may be disproportionately subsidizing the Medicare Trust Fund, which supports payments to hospitals and institutions under Medicare Part A. For immigrants and others, we tabulated Trust Fund contributions and withdrawals (that is, Trust Fund expenditures on their behalf) using multiple years of data from the Current Population Survey and the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. In 2009 immigrants made 14.7 percent of Trust Fund contributions but accounted for only 7.9 percent of its expenditures—a net surplus of $13.8 billion. In contrast, US-born people generated a $30.9 billion deficit. Immigrants generated surpluses of $11.1–$17.2 billion per year between 2002 and 2009, resulting in a cumulative surplus of $115.2 billion. Most of the surplus from immigrants was contributed by noncitizens and was a result of the high proportion of working-age taxpayers in this group. Policies that restrict immigration may deplete Medicare’s financial resources.
Chart — United States Border Patrol — Total Illegal Alien Apprehensions By Fiscal Year (Oct. 1st through Sept. 30th)
Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection
New GAO Reports and Testimonies
Source: Government Accountability Office
1. Homeland Security: An Overall Strategy Is Needed to Strengthen Disease Surveillance in Livestock and Poultry. GAO-13-424, May 21.
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/654750.pdf
Podcast – http://www.gao.gov/multimedia/podcasts/654743
2. Funding for 10 States’ Programs Supported by Four Environmental Protection Agency Categorical Grants. GAO-13-504R, May 6.
1. Immigration Enforcement: Preliminary Observations on DHS’s Overstay Enforcement Efforts, by Rebecca Gambler, director, homeland security and justice, before the Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security, House Committee on Homeland Security. GAO-13-602T, May 21.
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/654753.pdf
2. Telecommunications Networks: Addressing Potential Security Risks of Foreign-Manufactured Equipment, by Mark L. Goldstein, director, physical infrastructure issues, before the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, House Committee on Energy and Commerce. GAO-13-652T, May 21.
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/654764.pdf
3. Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Request: U.S. Government Accountability Office, by Gene L. Dodaro, Comptroller General of the United States, before the Subcommittee on Legislative Branch, Senate Committee on Appropriations. GAO-13-617T, May 21.
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/654758.pdf
The Religious Affiliation of U.S. Immigrants: Majority Christian, Rising Share of Other Faiths
Source: Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life
Over the past 20 years, the United States has granted permanent residency status to an average of about 1 million immigrants each year. These new “green card” recipients qualify for residency in a wide variety of ways – as family members of current U.S. residents, recipients of employment visas, refugees and asylum seekers, or winners of a visa lottery – and they include people from nearly every country in the world. But their geographic origins gradually have been shifting. U.S. government statistics show that a smaller percentage come from Europe and the Americas than did so 20 years ago, and a growing share now come from Asia, sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East-North Africa region.
With this geographic shift, it is likely that the religious makeup of legal immigrants also has been changing. The U.S. government, however, does not keep track of the religion of new permanent residents. As a result, the figures on religious affiliation in this report are estimates produced by combining government statistics on the birthplaces of new green card recipients over the period between 1992 and 2012 with the best available U.S. survey data on the religious self-identification of new immigrants from each major country of origin.
While Christians continue to make up a majority of legal immigrants to the U.S., the estimated share of new legal permanent residents who are Christian declined from 68% in 1992 to 61% in 2012. Over the same period, the estimated share of green card recipients who belong to religious minorities rose from approximately one-in-five (19%) to one-in-four (25%). This includes growing shares of Muslims (5% in 1992, 10% in 2012) and Hindus (3% in 1992, 7% in 2012). The share of Buddhists, however, is slightly smaller (7% in 1992, 6% in 2012), while the portion of legal immigrants who are religiously unaffiliated (atheist, agnostic or nothing in particular) has remained relatively stable, at about 14% per year.
Unauthorized immigrants, by contrast, come primarily from Latin America and the Caribbean, and the overwhelming majority of them – an estimated 83% – are Christian. That share is slightly higher than the percentage of Christians in the U.S. population as a whole (estimated at just under 80% of U.S. residents of all ages, as of 2010).
These are among the key findings of a new study by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life examining recent trends in the geographic origins and religious affiliation of immigrants to the United States.
Guestworkers in the high-skill U.S. labor market: An analysis of supply, employment, and wage trends
Source: Economic Policy Institute
This paper reviews and analyzes the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) labor market and workforce and the supply of high-skill temporary foreign workers, who serve as “guestworkers.” It addresses three central issues in the ongoing discussion about the need for high-skill guestworkers in the United States:
- Is there a problem producing enough STEM-educated students at sufficient performance levels to supply the labor market?
- How large is the flow of guestworkers into the STEM workforce and into the information technology (IT) workforce in particular? And what are the characteristics of these workers?
- What are the dynamics of the STEM labor market, and what are the employment and wage trends in the IT labor market?
Analysis of these issues provides the basis for assessing the extent of demand for STEM workers and the impact of guestworker flows on the STEM and IT workforces.
Source: Migration Policy Institute
Migration resulting from environmental change has been a topic of preoccupation since the 1990s, but in practice there has been very little policy development within the European Union on this topic. This brief finds that while such migration is likely to be largely concentrated in areas outside of Europe, there are far-reaching implications for policy.
Source: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
The “Hispanic Paradox” suggests that despite rates of poverty similar to African Americans, Hispanics have far better health and mortality outcomes, more comparable to non-Hispanic White Americans. Three prominent possible explanations for the Hispanic Paradox have emerged. The “Healthy Migrant Effect” suggests a health selection effect due to the demands of migration. The Hispanic lifestyle hypothesis focuses on Hispanics’ strong social ties and better health behaviors. The reverse migration argument suggests that the morbidity profile in the USA is affected when many Hispanic immigrants return to their native countries after developing a serious illness. We analyzed data from respondents aged 55 and over from the nationally representative 2006 American Community Survey including Mexican Americans (13,167 U.S. born; 11,378 immigrants), Cuban Americans (314 U.S. born; 3,730 immigrants), and non-Hispanic White Americans (629,341 U.S. born; 31,164 immigrants). The healthy migrant effect was supported with SES-adjusted disability comparable between Mexican, Cuban and non-Hispanic Whites born in the USA and all immigrants having lower adjusted odds of functional limitations than U.S. born non-Hispanic Whites. The reverse migration hypothesis was partially supported, with citizenship and longer duration in the USA associated with higher rates of SES-adjusted disability for Mexican Americans. The Hispanic healthy life-style explanation had little support in this study. Our findings underline the importance of considering nativity when planning for health interventions to address the needs of the growing Hispanic American older adult population.
MPI Issues Final Report on Advancing Regional Competitiveness in the United States, Mexico, and Central America
MPI Issues Final Report on Advancing Regional Competitiveness in the United States, Mexico, and Central America (PDF)
Source: Migration Policy Institute
The final report of the Regional Migration Study Group, Thinking Regionally to Compete Globally: Leveraging Migration & Human Capital in the U.S., Mexico, and Central America, outlines the powerful demographic, economic, and social forces reshaping Mexico and much of Central America and changing longstanding migration dynamics with the United States. The Study Group, co-chaired by former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo, former US Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, and former Guatemalan Vice President and Foreign Minister Eduardo Stein, offers a forward-looking, pragmatic agenda for the United States, Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — focusing on new collaborative approaches on migration and human-capital development to strengthen regional competitiveness.
Source: Child Welfare Information Gateway
Includes selected national organizations that provide information and resources on immigration issues related to children and families.
Source: Migration Policy Institute
Compared to other regions of origin in Latin America and around the world, South America has always had relatively few immigrants living in the United States. While the overall population remains lower than those from Mexico, Central America, or the Caribbean, South America’s immigrant population grew faster between 2000 and 2010 than all regions but Central America. South American immigrants’ share of the overall immigrant population in the United States has also been growing steadily for the past 50 years, from less than 1 percent in 1960 to almost 7 percent in 2011.
As a group, South American immigrants are better educated, less likely to enter the United States as refugees, and more likely to enter as immediate family members than the overall foreign-born population. Despite some differences, South Americans closely mirrored many trends in the overall foreign-born population, including age, arrival period, naturalization rates, and occupations. A closer examination of South American immigrants, however, reveals a great deal of variation by country of birth.
This article focuses on South American immigrants residing in the United States, examining the population’s size, geographic distribution, admission categories, and demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. Data are from the US Census Bureau’s 2011 American Community Survey (ACS), the 2000 Decennial Census (as well as earlier censuses), and the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS).
Guestworkers in the high-skill U.S. labor market
Source: Economic Policy Institute
Our examination of the IT labor market, guestworker flows, and the STEM education pipeline finds consistent and clear trends suggesting that the United States has more than a sufficient supply of workers available to work in STEM occupations:
- The flow of U.S. students (citizens and permanent residents) into STEM fields has been strong over the past decade, and the number of U.S. graduates with STEM majors appears to be responsive to changes in employment levels and wages.
- For every two students that U.S. colleges graduate with STEM degrees, only one is hired into a STEM job.
- In computer and information science and in engineering, U.S. colleges graduate 50 percent more students than are hired into those fields each year; of the computer science graduates not entering the IT workforce, 32 percent say it is because IT jobs are unavailable, and 53 percent say they found better job opportunities outside of IT occupations. These responses suggest that the supply of graduates is substantially larger than the demand for them in industry.
No more costly and bureaucratic stamps for public documents – European Commission acts to slash red tape in al l Member States
Source: European Commission
Today the European Commission is proposing to slash red tape for citizens and businesses by doing away with bureaucratic rubber-stamping exercises currently required to get public documents like your birth certificate recognised as authentic in another EU Member State. Currently, citizens who move to another Member State have to spend a lot of time and money in order to demonstrate that their public documents (such as birth or marriage certificates) issued by their Member State of origin are authentic. This involves the so-called ‘Apostille’ certificate which is used by public authorities in other states as proof that public documents, or the signatures of national officials on documents, are genuine. Businesses operating across EU borders in the EU’s Single Market are also affected. For instance, they will often be required to produce a number of certified public documents in order to prove their legal status when operating cross-border. These requirements date from an era when countries would only trust a public document if it came from the foreign office of another country. However, just as we trust in each other’s court judgements, we should be able to trust a Member State’s Registry Office issuing birth certificates, without needing their foreign office, justice ministry, or other authorities to vouch for them. Today, the European Commission is therefore proposing to scrap the ‘Apostille’ stamp and a further series of arcane administrative requirements for certifying public documents for people living and working in other Member States.
Under the Commission’s proposals, adopted today, citizens and businesses would no longer have to provide costly ‘legalised’ versions or ‘certified’ translations of official documents when, for example, registering a house or company, getting married, or requesting a residence card. Twelve categories of public documents1 would automatically be exempted from formalities such as ‘Apostille’ and ‘legalisation’ – which are currently required for around 1.4 million documents within the EU each year. Abolishing these requirements will save citizens and businesses in the EU up to 330 million euro, not counting the saved time and inconvenience that is avoided.
The new rules will not, however, have any impact on the recognition of the content or the effects of the documents concerned. The new rules will only help prove the authenticity of the public document, for example whether a signature is authentic and the capacity in which the public office holder is signing. This will have to be mutually accepted between Member States without any additional certification requirements.
The Commission is also proposing a further simplification tool: optional multilingual standardised forms in all EU official languages that citizens and businesses could request instead of and under the same conditions as national public documents concerning birth, death, marriage, registered partnership and legal status and representation of a company or other undertaking (see Annex for examples). This would particularly help to save on translation costs, since the attraction of such an option is that it frees citizens and businesses from having to worry about translations. The design of these forms has taken inspiration from specific international conventions2.
The proposal also provides for safeguards against fraud. If a national authority has reasonable doubt about a particular document, Member States will be able to check its authenticity with the issuing authorities through the existing Internal Market Information System (IMI).
Immigration — Detailed Review of the 2013 Senate Legislation and Side-by-Side Comparison with 2006, 2007 Senate Bills
Source: Migration Policy Institute
This issue brief offers a detailed review of major provisions included in S.744, the immigration legislation introduced in the Senate by a bipartisan group of senators, and compares those provisions with bills considered by the Senate in 2006 and 2007. Topics reviewed include border security and enforcement; creation of Registered Provisional Immigrant (RPI) status for unauthorized immigrants, the DREAM Act, agricultural workers program, and paths to lawful permanent residence; immigrant integration; creation of a new merit-based visa and adjustments to preference categories for family- and employment-based immigration; employment verification, detention and immigration court provisions, and more.
Source: Health Affairs
The 2012 presidential election transformed the national debate regarding unauthorized immigrants and US immigration policy in general. There had long been strong political resistance, especially among Republicans, to legalizing unauthorized immigrants. But on Election Day 2012, Latino voters turned out in large numbers, affecting the results in Florida and several Southwestern states and helping propel President Barack Obama to reelection. Republican losses in key states were attributed in part to voters’ perceptions that the party’s rhetoric on immigration had been too harsh. Almost overnight, immigration reform seemed to rise from the bottom to the top of Washington’s policy agenda.
No one has more at stake in this development than the estimated 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the United States.1 As of 2007 almost 60 percent of unauthorized immigrants lacked health insurance, and they accounted for about one-seventh of the country’s uninsured population.2,3
Yet as the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented, and millions of people gain access to coverage through new private insurance options or an expanded Medicaid program, under the law unauthorized immigrants will still be frozen out. Legally present immigrants without permanent resident status, such as students and temporary workers, will also be excluded from Medicaid, as will adults and, in some states, children who have been permanent residents for fewer than five years.