March 8, 2018

More Than Half of Kids in Immigrant Families Lived in Low-Income Households in 2016

Compared to kids in U.S.-born families, kids in immigrant families are more likely to grow up in low-income households. They are also more likely to have parents who work full-time year-round.

In 2016, 51% of kids in immigrant families and 38% of kids in U.S.-born families lived in low-income households. The median family income between the two groups also varied, with kids in immigrant families growing up in households earning $13,700 less.

Two obstacles — limitations in education and language — could be blocking parents in immigrant families from accessing better paying jobs. Among children in these families:

  • 55% lived with a parent who had difficulty speaking English; and
  • 23% lived in a household where both parents had less than a high school degree.

Nearly all (96%) of kids in immigrant families live with parents who have contributed to the nation’s economy for more than five years. Supporting these families — and ensuring that they have access to quality education, training and language learning opportunities — can help immigrant parents boost both their household earnings and their contributions to the nation’s economy.

Access more economic and education data by family nativity on the KIDS COUNT Data Center: