LatinaLista — The Annie E. Casey Foundation has released The 2007 KIDS COUNT data book online.
The book is a compilation of kid-centric data and how states rank against one another in meeting the needs of the children living in their states.
What’s always interesting is that the information is broken down by race and ethnicity so we can get a clearer picture of just how color-blind the system is. (That was supposed to be sarcastic.)
A quick look at the data tells us that children of color still suffer the most disconnect from mainstream society.
Yet, it was the specific information on “Children in Immigrant Families that had me sit up and take notice.
According to the report, only 4% of the entire child population of the United States is foreign-born, which leaves 96% as U.S. citizens.
Now, regardless of how critics describe these children, they are native-born, US citizens. But because of the 170 immigration measures enacted by state legislators across the country this year, out of the proposed 1,404 that made it to debate, according to a new study by the National Conference of State Legislators, this country in essence is driving out its own citizens.
Does it matter that they are children?
No, because one of the hallmarks of an industrialized, educated nation is its comprehension and respect of the fact that children have rights.
In the United States, 42% of the children live in families where the parents are not U.S. citizens.
That’s a lot of families who are being torn apart by current immigration enforcement, and for what?
The most common complaint against undocumented immigrants is that they threaten our way of life.
Well, again looking at the KIDS COUNT database, it seems these families could have a positive impact on our way of life:
Children in single-parent immigrant families stand at 23%; for children in U.S.-born families, the percentage is 34%.
And if ever there was a doubt that immigrants come here to work, a quick scan of the database of the median family income among households with children should clarify things:
The median family income for children in immigrant families is $46,500, for children in U.S.-born families the income is $54,700 – that is only a difference of $8,200.
But what is really amazing is that 19 states show that immigrant family’s median income is actually higher than U.S.-born families’ median income.
The immigrant families are not stealing the jobs â€” they are working harder and in the process they are exemplifying what has been said throughout history about immigrants â€” this nation was built on the labor of immigrants.
It is as true today as it was yesterday.