Data Hits: California's Immigrants Make Significant Contributions to the State Economy; Poverty More Prevalent Among Children of Working Immigrant Families

Publication date: 
April 2019
Logo for the California Budget and Policy Center. Used in associated with their resource, Data Hits: California's Immigrants Make Significant Contributions to the State Economy; Poverty More Prevalent Among Children of Working Immigrant Families

Three new Data Hits from the Budget Center highlight the significant contributions that California's immigrants make to the state economy and that children of working immigrant families are far more likely to live in poverty than other children.

Two of these Data Hits from Senior Policy Analyst Sara Kimberlin and Policy Analyst Kayla Kitson show that half of all California workers are immigrants or children of immigrants and that our state's undocumented immigrants pay more than $3 billion annually in state and local taxes. A third Data Hit from Senior Policy Analyst Alissa Anderson finds that in California, the poverty rate for children of immigrants in working families is more than twice the rate for other kids in working families. 

Even though many immigrants file income taxes, including undocumented workers, many are ineligible for the California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC), a refundable state tax credit that helps California residents who earn little from their jobs to pay for basic needs. State policymakers could reduce poverty and economic hardship by extending the CalEITC to all income-eligible working immigrants who file taxes. Furthermore, because nearly 9 in 10 undocumented adults with low incomes in California lack health care coverage, removing immigration status as a barrier to accessing health coverage would help more families to thrive.