Thursday, December 15, 2011

Immigrants create jobs for U.S. workers, new study shows

Image credit: Jerusalem Post

Findings from a nationwide study released today offer new evidence that immigrants create jobs for U.S. citizen workers. Immigrants with specific skill types do not compete with native workers, but complement them and improve their employment outlook, says the report. The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the Partnership for a New American Economy released results examining the impact of immigration on the American economy based on a multi-year statistical analysis. 

The report entitled “Immigrants and American Jobs” by economist and professor Madeleine Zavodny investigates the relationship between the foreign-born workforce and the employment rate for native U.S. workers. It focuses on two critical groups: foreign-born adults with advanced degrees and foreign workers here on temporary-employment visas. In both cases, more foreign-born workers means more jobs for U.S. natives.  As many as 262 more native-born workers are employed for every 100 foreign-born workers with advanced U.S. degrees who work in science, technology, engineering, or math (“STEM”) fields. 

The report also looks at the fiscal impact of the foreign-born. It finds that, on average, all immigrants pay more in taxes than they receive in benefits, with the finding particularly true for highly educated immigrants. 

Coupling these two findings, the data shows that policy reforms designed to accommodate more of these categories of immigrants would boost employment, while making a positive contribution to government budgets.

Congressman Tim Griffin (R-AR), member of the House Judiciary Committee, stated that the report yielded important evidence for reforming immigration policy with a focus on skilled immigrants.

“We have a shortage of STEM graduates with advanced degrees here in the United States, which hinders American job creators’ ability to grow their businesses and hire additional employees,” said Congressman Griffin. “Many highly skilled immigrants study in the U.S. but are forced to return home after graduation, where they work to strengthen their home nation’s economy to compete against ours. I am working on legislation that will change the system so that we can keep the best and the brightest, which will strengthen our economy and create jobs here in America.”  

New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, co-chair of the Partnership for a New American Economy also underlined the findings significance: “At a time when job creation should be our highest priority, the study released today casts light on some of the greatest potential areas for growth, at no cost to taxpayers. It’s time for Washington to restart the conversation on immigration reform – and to center it on our economic needs.”

Madeleine Zavodny, economics professor at Agnes ScottCollege and author of the report for notes that the data’s relevance transcends the field of economics and offers insight for legislators who, she says “need to know what’s at stake in immigration policy.”

The report calls for specific legislative proposals that could create jobs for U.S. workers:
  • Give priority for foreign workers who earn advanced degrees from U.S. universities, especially those who work in STEM fields.
  • Increase the number of green cards (permanent visas) for highly educated workers.
  • Make available more temporary visas for both skilled and less-skilled workers.

Currently only 15 percent of green cards are reserved for employment needs. Factoring in a foreign-born worker’s spouses and children, the real percentage is closer to seven, according to information released by Partnership for a New American Economy.


fan of Gaia said...

The US is where so many well educated people want to work and live.Canada used to lose so many university graduates that we called it the "brain drain". Your gain our loss. It seems self-evident. Good they finally could show it in a report.

Vicente Duque said...

Thanks Billie for Good Article and Wonderful Blog that I am always consulting


SB 1070 : Business loves "Federal Preemption" and doesn't like "State Rights" creating regulations and obstacles for them, the Chamber of Commerce too, of course. "Federal Preemption" means less legal actions from states and people against business

"Federal Preemption" means the superiority of the Federal Government over the whims of the states and the supremacy of Congress Law over State Law. That is why Business prefers decisions at the Federal level and not a Hodge-Podge, that is a "mess" or a "jumble" of State Laws and Regulations.

So you see, what the Supreme Court decides in the Case of Arizona v United States, "papers please" or SB 1070 is of enormous interest for Business and sooner or later they are going to feel the glory or the pain.

As far as I understand Business in Arizona is not very happy with Governor Jan Brewer. And not only Business but many Civic Associations, Sheriffs, Police Chiefs, City Mayors, Councilors, County Commissioners, Legal Groups and Lawyers don't love the actions of that Lady.

You can tell me that Jurisprudence is an abstract science and that these economic and political considerations have no weight.

May be you are right, but at the end, Business, Money, Civic Associations, Legal Professionals, Professors, Civil Rights Activists etc .... will find a way of being heard. And big political and electoral movements may ensue against this ugly patchwork of legislations by 50 states.