A profile of U.S. children with unauthorized immigrant parent

Related Content
Capps, Randy; Fix Michael; Zong, Jie
Institutional Author
Migration Policy Institute (MPI)
Resource Type
Fact Sheet
Acquisition Number
Published Date
02-19-2016 2:54 PM
Published Year
Number of Pages
Subscription Only
The research literature finds that growing up with unauthorized immigrant parents places childrennearly 80 percent of whom were born in the United Statesat a disadvantage. These children are more exposed to a number of risk factors than children of immigrants generally and all U.S. children, including lower preschool enrollment, reduced socioeconomic progress, and higher rates of linguistic isolation, limited English proficiency, and poverty. Barring major policy changes, the development of these young children will take place in families disadvantaged by parental unauthorized status. Over the past decade, immigration reform that would provide a pathway to legal status for these parents stalled in Congress several times, and recently a federal appeals court upheld a lower court opinion suspending the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) initiative, which would extend work permits and a temporary reprieve from deportation to unauthorized immigrant parents. Twenty-six states challenged the DAPA program in federal court and won an injunction suspending its implementation. As appeal to the injunction awaits a likely Supreme Court review, some of these states are implementing policies that could compound the negative effects of parental unauthorized status on children, making the well-being of children in mixed-status families even more precarious. This fact sheet employs U.S. Census Bureau data to examine the number, characteristics, and socioeconomic status of the 5.1 million children under age 18, both U.S.-citizen and noncitizen, who are living with an unauthorized immigrant parent. The analysis explores the prevalence of mixed-status families (those with unauthorized immigrant parents and U.S.-citizen children), updating the literature examining them.
Students with Interrupted Formal Education
Socioeconomic Status
School Statistics
Migrant Students
Immigrant Students
Graduation and Dropout Rates
Enrollment Rates
Administration and Leadership