In a new project commissioned by the Knight Foundation, MPI provides an
overview of the characteristics of young children (under age 9) of
immigrants living in 14 communities throughout the United States.
Younger children of immigrants differ in some important ways from older children
of immigrants as they are more likely to be US-born, are more likely to have
unauthorized immigrant parents, and often live in families with lower incomes.
The fact sheets use 2000 Census data to track the growth of the
population of young children of immigrants between 1990 and 2000,
their citizenship status, parents’ places of birth, parents’ immigration
status, and incidence of mixed-status families. The fact sheets
also examine parents’ levels of education and English-language
ability, parents’ occupations, wages, labor force participation
rates, shares of young children of immigrants living in poverty or
low-income households, and rates of benefits use.
In most of these communities – most of which are not traditional
gateways for immigration – children of immigrants are the fastest
growing component of the child population. Many young children
of immigrants live in mixed-status families in which adults are noncitizens
and children are citizens, and parents of young children of immigrants
vary greatly in their educational profiles, English-language ability,
and economic situations by world region of birth.