New Study Has Some Bad News About The Immigrant Experience In The U.S.—And We're Not Surprised

New Study Has Some Bad News About The Immigrant Experience In The U.S.—And We're Not Surprised
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Updated 6 months ago

President Trump's approaches to immigration have been markedly different from those of President Obama. Within the first year of his Presidency, Trump instituted immigration bans on certain countries, moved to end The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), and began mass deportations through U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). TransferWise, a money transferring platform that seeks to tear down borders by making international money exchanges easier, teamed up with Pollfish to see how these new policies are affecting the average life of an immigrant in the United States. Big surprise: they're not making it easier.

An overwhelming 81% of immigrants (more than 3 out of 4) have reported feeling discriminated against. These feelings are especially notable among Arabs, who are 15% more likely to feel this way. Young people, aged 18-24, were 25% more likely to experience feelings of discrimination, which checks out with the two places immigrants will most likely encounter racism: school (17%) and work (18%).

62% of immigrants have been called "an offensive cultural or ethnic term." Also notably, 50% of U.S. natives have also experienced this, with black and Arab males experiencing this discrimination most often. 


65% of immigrants are sending money to their country of origin. 2 out of 3 of those immigrants are doing so to support family. Several states, including Georgia, New Jersey, Texas, and Oregon, are considering bills which tax residents for sending money to other countries. Oklahoma already has such a law in place - such legislation could make life drastically more expensive for immigrants. 

Many immigrants feel afraid or judged when speaking English. Half of those people feel uncomfortable because of their accent. One in three immigrants also felt uncomfortable speaking their native language in public, however, which dwarves the 12% of U.S. natives who feel similarly. 50% of immigrants speak Spanish in the home.

75% of immigrants are worried about immigration policy. As residents of the United States, and sometimes citizens thereof, immigrants should feel protected by their representatives in the government. 36%, however, do not feel that way, especially immigrants in New Jersey, Florida, and Texas. While 58% of immigrants think it's important they're protected by their congresspeople, only 44% of U.S. natives agree. 

Of the immigrants who have become naturalized citizens, 70% identify as American. 37% of immigrants picture themselves still in the U.S. five years from now.