A major chronic problem with people in unauthorized or legal but vulnerable immigration status is that they are less economically mobile and as a result less productive. FWD.us has put together estimates of the number of people in this condition. A two adult household with one adult unauthorized or in Temporary Protected Status, plus persons on temporary work visas, means that both adults are economically less mobile. This limited mobility may affect at least 10 million and possibly up to 15 million working age people.
(Start with 8 million unauthorized workers and roughly 750,000 – one million persons on a legal temporary work visa which ties their hands. Then consider whom they are living with.)
Check oit the FWD Interactive tool which gives you its state-level estimates.
FWD.us estimates that some 10.6 million U.S. citizens live with undocumented immigrants. More than 22 million people in the U.S. live in mixed-status households, where at least one undocumented person lives with U.S. citizens, green card holders, or other lawful temporary immigrants. All told, more than 1 in 20 people in the U.S. are under constant threat of being separated from family members and loved ones in their home.
About 5.8 million U.S. citizen children live with undocumented household members, with 4.9 million of these children having at least one undocumented parent. Most of these children were born in the United States, are U.S. citizens, and are enrolled in public schools. Some U.S. citizen children have been barred from accessing benefits to which they’re entitled, including access to COVID-19 recovery assistance, because of their parents’ undocumented status.2
At the same time, nearly 1.7 million U.S. citizens have a spouse who is undocumented. Roughly a quarter have been married for 20 years or longer, while more than half have been married for 10 years or longer.
California, Texas, Florida, and New York have some of the highest numbers of U.S. citizens living with undocumented immigrants; more than half of U.S. citizens living in mixed-status households live in these four states.