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A Collaborative Report on the Aging Undocumented Population of Illinois

December 30, 2020

Undocumented individuals face pervasive and structural barriers due to their immigration status that block them from the services older adults depend on to successfully age in place. Meanwhile, Illinois has among the highest populations of U.S. undocumented individuals (400,000+). The movement of the population into senior years has substantial implications for public systems of health, health care and social services throughout the state.This report explores how the undocumented population in Illinois will continue to grow by 2030, as well as discuss in depth the implications of that data.As the U.S. population ages, and the older adult population diversifies ethnically, racially, linguistically and economically, this will also include the aging of the undocumented community. This report strives to take into account the aging of the undocumented community, specifically when we discuss the future of aging and health care services.Click "Download" to access this resource.

Immigration: A Demographic Lifeline in Midwetern Metros

March 23, 2017

This report focuses how immigrants have helped offset native-born population loss and revitalized an aging workforce by examining 46 Midwestern metro areas as a refresh of a similar study published by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs in 2014. Metro areas are a useful barometer by which to measure the impact of immigration because the economies of central cities and their suburbs are tightly connected and because large immigrant communities are found in both central cities and suburbs of metro areas. Also, the extent to which immigration matters to metro-area economies heightens the importance of immigration as an issue and raises the stakes for immigration reform.

Benchmarks of Immigration Civic Engagement

July 1, 2010

Immigrant civic engagement is an increasingly critical issue for the United States. Immigrant civic engagement may take various forms, but naturalization, voting registration and voter turnout are key measures or benchmarks. This report examines immigrant civic participation in terms of immigrants' current engagement, the capacity of states to provide naturalization and voting registration, and the impact that immigrants are having on the adult citizen population in the U.S.

Economic Progress via Legalization: Lessons from the Last Legalization Program

November 5, 2009

The data analyzed in IPC's latest Special Report, Economic Progress via Legalization, indicates that unauthorized immigrants who gained legal status in the 1980s through the legalization provisions of the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) experienced clear improvement in their socioeconomic situation. Between 1990 and 2006, the educational attainment of IRCA immigrants increased substantially, their poverty rates fell dramatically, and their home ownership rates improved tremendously. Moreover, their real wages rose, many of them moved into managerial positions, and the vast majority did not depend upon public assistance. The findings presented in this report support the notion that legalization of unauthorized immigrants can play a role in promoting economic growth and lessening socioeconomic disparities. Reforming our immigration system is not an obstacle to getting our economy back on track.

Illinois Immigrant Political Almanac

October 23, 2008

Immigrants make up a growing part of Illinois' population. As immigrants settle in thisstate, become citizens, and register to vote, we are also playing an increasingly key role in our state's electorate. This report documents the growth of Illinois immigrant voters, not just in size but also in our share of the total electorate. It also demonstrates how immigrant voters are settling in key areas of the state where they could swing elections and thus determine the balance of power on the state and federal level.

The New American Electorate: The Growing Political Power of Immigrants and Their Children

October 1, 2008

At a time when federal, state, and local elections are often decided by small voting margins -- with candidates frequently locked in ferocious competition for the ballots of those "voting blocs" that might turn the electoral tide in their favor -- one large and growing bloc of voters has been consistently overlooked and politically underestimated: New Americans. This group of voters and potential voters includes not only immigrants who have become U.S. citizens (Naturalized Americans), but also the U.S.-born children of immigrants who were raised during the current era of large-scale immigration from Latin America and Asia which began in 1965 (the Post-1965 Children of Immigrants). These immigrants and their children have a powerful and highly personal connection to the modern immigrant experience that most other Americans do not. It's one thing to hear family stories about a grandfather or great-grandfather coming to the United States during the much-romanticized "Ellis Island" era of immigration from Europe that ended decades ago. It's quite another to belong to a family that is experiencing first-hand the political and economic realities of immigration today. The ranks of registered voters who are New Americans, or Latino or Asian, have been growing rapidly this decade and are likely to play an increasingly pivotal role in elections at all levels in the years to come, particularly in battleground states like Florida, Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico. As recent public opinion polls reveal, anti-immigrant political rhetoric is likely to motivate many New Americans to cast ballots in November, but is unlikely to win many votes for candidates perceived as anti-immigrant.

Out of Sync: New Temporary Worker Proposals Unlikely to Meet U.S. Labor Needs

June 7, 2007

A key component of the immigration reform bill now being debated in Congress is a new temporary worker program that, ostensibly, would replace the current stream of undocumented migration with a regulated flow of less-skilled immigrant workers. However, growing long-term labor shortages in key industries dependent on less-skilled labor require the recruitment and training of permanent entry-level workers, both native-born and foreign-born, to fill a wide range of occupations. Yet the larger immigration reform bill provides for only a small increase in the overall level of permanent immigration, and the vast majority of this increase is not geared to the growing demand for less-skilled labor. In addition, the temporary worker provisions of the legislation, as they now stand, do not provide a path to permanent residence for any new temporary workers, and set a cap on the admission of temporary workers that falls well below current labor demand. As a result, neither industry nor workers have incentives to invest in each other to maximize the economic benefits of a temporary worker program. An alternative program that allows workers to apply for permanent status would better address industry's need for a larger and more settled less-skilled workforce and would more likely discourage undocumented immigration in the future.

Uninsured Persons in Illinois Legislative Districts

March 6, 2007

Health and Disability Advocates and Rob Paral and Associates have developed estimates of uninsured persons in Illinois by state legislative districts. These estimates of the uninsured household population are categorized by poverty level and age. This report presents the basic distributions by age and poverty status. This report produced by Rob Paral and Associates in collaboration with United Power for Action and Justice and Heartland Alliance.

Undocumented Immigration by Congressional Districts

October 1, 2006

In this IPC Policy Brief, author Rob Paral uses new census data to update his earlier IPC report (Playing Politics on Immigration: Congress Favors Image over Substance in Passing H.R. 4437) on the number of undocumented immigrants in U.S. congressional districts.

The Growth and Reach of Immigration: New Census Bureau Data Underscore Importance of Immigrants

August 1, 2006

New data from the 2005 American Community Survey (ACS), released by the Census Bureau on August 15, 2006, underscore the extent to which immigration continues to fuel the expansion of the U.S. labor force.

Playing Politics on Immigration: Congress Favors Image over Substance in Passing H.R. 4437

February 1, 2006

Congressional representatives who supported H.R. 4437 -- the Border Protection, Anti-Terrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005 -- are most likely to represent districts with relatively few undocumented immigrants.

Economic Growth & Immigration: Bridging the Demographic Divide

November 2, 2005

This report examines the relationship between immigration and sustained U.S. economic growth. As the U.S. labor force ages and becomes better educated, the economy is continuing to create a substantial number of jobs for individuals with low levels of formal education and that favor younger workers. These trends are creating a critical demographic gap between U.S. labor supply and demand that immigration can help fill.