Immigrants and immigrants in the workforce are a very hot topic right now with the 2020 Presidential Election coming up.
In a recent study done by CapRelo, they looked at immigration and the labor force in America to show how important and prevalent immigrants are in the American workforce.
The first thing they looked at was immigrant representation in the workforce by industry using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The total number of immigrants in the workforce in 2018 was 28,202,417 and during this time the construction and extraction industry had the largest percent of immigrant workers with 9.5%. Falling not far behind is the building and grounds cleaning and maintenance with 8.2%. CapRelo says “Manual labor professions, such as construction and maintenance, are the jobs that the highest percentage of immigrant workers participate in, but sales and administrative support were not far behind.”
When looking at the different industries for male and female immigrants, you can see that men are much more likely to work in construction (15.9%) and women are more likely to be doing office and administrative support work (11.2%). This might not be too surprising to most, but less than 1% of immigrant women work in construction.
As more and more immigrants come to the U.S., you can see changes in the industries they choose to work in. Looking at the years 2007 and 2018, the number of immigrants working in sales, natural resources, and transportation decreased and the number of immigrants working in the service industry, architecture, education, and many more industries increased.
As the year 2020 continues and immigration becomes more of a heated topic, it will be interesting to see how this changes immigrants in the American workforce.