News / USA

Study: Immigrants Benefit NYC Economy, Quality of Life

Immigrants Benefit NYC Economy, Quality of Life, Study Showsi
X
Adam Phillips
April 23, 2014 9:30 PM
New York has long been a magnet for immigrants looking for a better life. But a new independent research study shows that immigrants help the city thrive as well. VOA’s Adam Phillips has more.
Adam Phillips
New York has long been a magnet for immigrants looking for a better life. A new independent research study also shows that immigrants help the city thrive as well.

Immigrants like those at a recent New York rally are an increasingly potent economic force. According to the Mayor’s office, immigrants make up more than 40 percent of the city’s population.
 
Taken together, those three million people would constitute the third largest city in America, says immigration commissioner Nisha Agarwal.    
    
“So we are an immigrant-rich city, and immigrants are in our schools. They are driving our economy at all levels and in all professions. And we need to support that because it not only benefits the families involved, but it benefits the city as a whole,” said Agarwal.

Helping neighborhoods

An independent research report sponsored by the Americas Society/Council of the Americas, - or AS/COA - contradicts a common perception that links immigrants with poverty and crime.  
 
The study examined rising immigration statistics and neighborhood police reports between 1990 and 2010. New York City’s economy and quality of life improved greatly during that period - especially in declining neighborhoods - and the report"s author, Jacob Vigdor, found a link.  
   
“The immigrants go to these neighborhoods because they are the only places they can afford, and they stabilize those neighborhoods. And they reduce vacancy rates. They reduce the state of disrepair, and these are the things that lead to crime dropping,” said Vigdor.
 
Immigrants who make the leap of faith to come to America are often less likely to commit crimes and more likely to work hard, said Harvard University social policy professor Robert Sampson. “So why would you come to this country? Well, you want to work. You want to get ahead. You want to raise your family, you want to build, essentially, a community.”   

Immigrant entrepreneurship

Immigrant entrepreneurship also helps drive the city’s growth. And immigrants often perform the necessary jobs native-born Americans don’t want, said ASCOA policy manager Kate Brick.      
 
"Like in the agricultural sector, the manufacturing sector [and] the service industry. It runs the gamut. And at the same time, immigrants coming to the US are extremely diverse," said Brick. "In addition to people who are working in lower paying jobs, you have some of the best minds in the world that are here working in the tech industry, and in engineering, in science, in the medical field.”

Even undocumented immigrants, who work as street vendors and nannies, help pay their way, said Jacob Vigdor, the author of Immigration and New York City.

“You need to buy things, and, when you buy things, you pay sales taxes. You need to live someplace. Whether you own a place or rent a place, there are property taxes on that dwelling, and property taxes and sales taxes are major sources of revenue for any kind of municipal government,” said Vigdor.

The Americas Society/Council of the Americas is using its study on immigrants and the New York economy to help other U.S. cities to welcome immigrants in ways that will benefit foreign-born and “native-born” alike.

You May Like

On Everest, Helicopters Rescue Stranded Climbers

Choppers transport some of more than 100 mountaineers trapped after deadly quake, avalanches More

Video Ten Years After Riots, France Searches for Answers to Neglected Suburbs

In 2005, a Paris suburb exploded into violence after two teenagers were electrocuted as they hid from police; since then, somethings have changed, others not More

US, Japan Announce Historic Revision of Defense Cooperation Guidelines

Nations say new guidelines will be 'cornerstone for peace and security' in Asia-Pacific region while also serving as 'platform for a more stable international security environment' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Gennady from: Russia, Volga Region
April 20, 2014 7:05 AM
The research report sponsored by AS/COA interferes with the fight against international children abduction letting the USA to become a safe heaven for abductors and human trafficking. Just recently the U.S.Embassy in Russia issued entry visas to Russian-born school age children abducted by their mother without consent or informing their biological and legal father, Russian Federation national. The children’s sudden disappearance from Russia looked like a flight without informing and saying goodbye to their schools, friends, and close relatives. She travelled to her new fourth husband, USA national for permanent place of residence. In an undisclosed location in Pennsylvania or New Jersey the abducted children, Orlov Artemyi Ilyich, born June 30, 1997 and Orlova Veronica Ilyinichna, born December 25, 2006 were welcomed in the USA schools.

by: Tom from: Chicago
April 20, 2014 3:45 AM
We need to give immigrants full discretion to come and legally work in USA. New York must spread across all states.
In Response

by: Cricket23 from: United States
April 24, 2014 6:14 AM
We allow in over 900,000 legal immigrants a year.

by: James Macdonald
April 19, 2014 7:57 AM
The Americas Society/Council of the Americas website says :

"Council of the Americas counts among its membership the many leading multinational corporations doing business in Latin America"

These multi national corporations support an open borders policy as a means of increasing their profits.

Is anyone naive enough to believe that they corporations would permit the "independent" study to reach a conclusion that mass amnesty was anything but beneficial to the American economy?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
‘Angel of the Migrants’ Helps Desperate Syrians Arriving in Europei
X
Henry Ridgwell
April 26, 2015 10:36 PM
Waves of migrants are continuing to arrive on the shores of southern Italy from North Africa. After their dangerous journey across the Mediterranean, they face an unknown future in Europe. In the Sicilian city of Catania there is an activist dedicated to helping the refugees on their journey.
Video

Video ‘Angel of the Migrants’ Helps Desperate Syrians Arriving in Europe

Waves of migrants are continuing to arrive on the shores of southern Italy from North Africa. After their dangerous journey across the Mediterranean, they face an unknown future in Europe. In the Sicilian city of Catania there is an activist dedicated to helping the refugees on their journey.
Video

Video Ten Years After Riots, France Searches for Answers to Neglected Suburbs

January’s terrorist attacks and fears of more to come are casting a spotlight on France’s neglected suburbs. Home to many immigrants, and sometimes hubs of crime, they were rocked by rioting a decade ago. Lisa Bryant visited the Paris suburb of Clichy-sous-Bois, where the 2005 violence first broke out, and has this report about what has changed and what has not.
Video

Video Gay Marriage Goes Before US Supreme Court

This week, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments on whether gay people have a constitutional right to marriage. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the case could lead to the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage, or a continuation of the status quo in which individual states decide whether to recognize gay unions.
Video

Video Study: Insecticide Damaging Wild Bee Populations

A popular but controversial type of insecticide is damaging important wild bee populations, according to a new study. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Data Servers Could Heat Private Homes

As every computer owner knows, when their machines run a complex program they get pretty hot. In fact, cooling the processors can be expensive, especially when you're dealing with huge banks of computer servers. But what if that energy could heat private homes? VOA’s George Putic reports that a Dutch energy firm aims to do just that.
Video

Video Cinema That Crosses Borders Showcased at Tribeca Film Festival

Among the nearly 100 feature length films being shown at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival in New York City are more than 20 documentaries and features with international appeal, from a film about a Congolese businessman in China, to documentaries shot in Pakistan and diaspora communities in the U.S., to a poetic look at disaffected South African youth. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video UN Confronts Threat of Young Radicals

The radicalization and recruitment of young people into Islamist extremist groups has become a growing challenge for governments worldwide. On Thursday, the U.N. Security Council heard from experts on the issue, which has become a potent threat to international peace and security. VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports.
Video

Video Growing Numbers of Turks Discover Armenian Ancestry

In a climate of improved tolerance, growing numbers of people in Turkey are discovering their grandmothers were Armenian. Hundreds of thousands of Armenians escaped the mass deportations and slaughter of the early 1900's by forced conversion to Islam. Or, Armenian children were taken in by Turkish families and assimilated. Now their stories are increasingly being heard. Dorian Jones reports from Istanbul that the revelations are viewed as an important step.
Video

Video Migrants Trek Through Western Balkans to Reach EU

Migrants from Africa and other places are finding different routes into the European Union in search of a better life. The Associated Press followed one clandestine group to document their trek through the western Balkans to Hungary. Zlatica Hoke reports that the migrants started using that route about four years ago. Since then, it has become the second-most popular path into Western Europe, after the option of sailing from North Africa to Italy.
Video

Video US Businesses See Cuba as New Frontier

The Obama administration's opening toward Cuba is giving U.S. companies hope they'll be able to do business in Cuba despite the continuation of the U.S. economic embargo against the communist nation. Some American companies have been able to export some products to Cuba, but the recent lifting of Cuba's terrorism designation could relax other restrictions. As VOA's Daniela Schrier reports, corporate heavy hitters are lining up to head across the Florida Straits - though experts urge caution.
Video

Video Kenya Launches Police Recruitment Drive After Terror Attacks

Kenya launched a major police recruitment drive this week as part of a large-scale effort to boost security following a recent spate of terror attacks. VOA’s Gabe Joselow reports that allegations of corruption in the process are raising old concerns about the integrity of Kenya’s security forces.
Video

Video Japan, China in Race for Asia High-Speed Rail Projects

A lucrative competition is underway in Asia for billions of dollars in high-speed rail projects. Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia Thailand and Vietnam are among the countries planning to move onto the fast track. They are negotiating with Japan and the upstart Chinese who are locked in a duel to revolutionize transportation across Asia. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok has details.
Video

Video Scientists: Mosquitoes Attracted By Our Genes

Some people always seem to get bitten by mosquitoes more than others. Now, scientists have proved that is really the case - and they say it’s all because of genes. It’s hoped the research might lead to new preventative treatments for diseases like malaria, as Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Bible Museum Coming to Washington DC

Washington is the center of American political power and also home to some of the nation’s most visited museums. A new one that will showcase the Bible has skeptics questioning the motives of its conservative Christian funders. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Afghan First Lady Pledges No Roll Back on Women's Rights

Afghan First Lady Rula Ghani, named one of Time's 100 Most Influential, says women should take part in talks with Taliban. VOA's Rokhsar Azamee has more from Kabul.

VOA Blogs