By Janet Murguía, President and CEO, NCLR
(Originally posted in Newsweek)
As we embark on Hispanic Heritage Month, and ahead of the first presidential debate, it is no secret how different this election cycle has been for many Latinos in America. None of us anticipated the extent our community would be the face, and in many ways the target, of the most prominent issue of this election season: immigration.
Led by Donald Trump, the tone of 2016’s immigration discussion has managed to cast aspersions well beyond those personally affected by immigration policy to include attacks on the Latino community as a whole. From denigrating Mexican Americans as “criminals, rapists, and drug dealers” to questioning the integrity of an American judge based solely on his Latino heritage, Trump has demonized our community and advanced the dark and baseless notion that Latinos are a threat, and not a strength, to our country.
This week in immigration: National Academy of Sciences releases major report on immigration economic impact; Citizenship Day activities
National Academy of Sciences Report: An expert panel of the National Academy of Sciences, the nation’s most prestigious and respected source of independent and objective scientific analysis, released a major new report this week on The Economic and Fiscal Impacts of Immigration. Among the report’s major findings:
- Immigration has an overall positive impact on long-run economic growth in the U.S.
- There is little evidence that immigration significantly affects overall employment levels and wages of native-born workers; research finds slight positive effects for some groups and slight negative effects on other groups of native-born workers.
- As adults, the children of immigrants are among the strongest fiscal contributors in the U.S. population, contributing more in taxes than…the rest of the native-born population.
- The population of unauthorized immigrants shrank by over a million from 2007-2009, and has remained stable since.
If you thought Latino voters were only mildly interested in the 2016 election, think again. In a new text message poll of the NCLR Action Network, the vast majority of those who responded said they were “enthusiastic” about voting in this year’s elections.
In the survey of more than 700 people, we found that 653 were registered voters. Of those polled, 74 percent said they were excited to vote this year, compared to 26 percent who said they were not.
By Yuqi Wang, Economic Policy Analyst, Economic Policy Project, NCLR
In 2015, Latinos were earning more, less likely to live in poverty, and more likely to have health insurance coverage than they did in 2014. This good news came from the recently released 2015 income and poverty data. A few bright spots in the data from the U.S. Census Bureau include:
- The income of a typical Latino household income grew from $42,491 in 2014 to $45,148 in 2015. Latino households have not had this much money in their pockets since 2000 when median household income reached $45,649. This 6.1% jump from last year outpaced the 5.2% growth of the typical national household income
- There were one million fewer Latinos living in poverty in 2015. The percentage of Latinos living in poverty fell by 2.2% between 2014 and 2015 while the national poverty rate decreased by 1.2% during the same time.
- Latinos saw the highest increase of health coverage. Health coverage grew by 3.6% in 2015, the most growth out of any racial or ethnic group.
By Jesus Sanchez, Fellow, National Institute for Latino School Leaders, NCLR
The summer has ended and students are back in school. As you reflect on your summer, think about all the wonderful things that happened, like vacations, time spent with family, visits to the local parks, and impromptu picnics. Summer is the perfect time to unwind, relax, and enjoy life.
However, with all the activity and action that summer brings, it’s easy to let learning become an afterthought. Even more, summer breaks keep children away from school just long enough to create a gap in learning, which often results in children losing ground on important academic skills.