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Future Child. 1995 Summer-Fall;5(2):72-89.

Immigrant children and their families: issues for research and policy. Board on Children and Families.

[No authors listed]


Discussions about immigration, focused on such policy issues as labor force participation and use of welfare programs, frequently fail to include considerations of children's well-being. Even those debates which center on programs that benefit children--such as schools, public assistance, and social welfare programs--are often based on issues related to short-term costs and societal impacts, neglecting considerations of the well-being and future contributions of immigrant children. Hence, immigrant children have been rendered largely invisible in policy spheres. Yet first- and second-generation immigrant children are the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population under age 15. In this context, the Board on Children and Families of the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine convened a workshop on immigrant children and families to review what is known about this population and to identify issues that warrant further examination. This article is based on the discussions at the workshop. Several themes emerged from the workshop, including the value of looking at immigrant children in the context of their families; the importance of understanding public concerns over the costs of immigrants, coupled with the difficulty of pinpointing just what those costs are; and the need for policymakers to address such policy issues as education and health care. The article concludes by identifying a number of areas in which research is warranted as immigrant children and families grow to become a core part of American communities, schools, and society.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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