A new US census report confirms that there are more foreign-born workers in the United States than ever before. Foreign-born workers represent 16% of the US workforce, which is lower only than percentages from the early 1900’s. The report relies on data collected in 2007.
The report also found that naturalized US citizens in the workforce were more likely to have a bachelor’s degree than non-naturalized workers or native born workers. Naturalized citizens were also more likely to be fluent in English and in some cases, another language as well.
Foreign-born workers from different parts of the world tend to work in different types of occupations in a pattern reflecting their educational achievements. Workers were clustered at positions requiring a lot of formal education or very little formal education, with less foreign-born workers at mid-level positions. For example, workers from Latin America were much more likely to work in construction, repair and maintenance occupations while workers from Asian countries were much more likely work in management, health care, and other professional fields.
The report concludes that foreign-born workers are an important part of all segments of the US workforce. Every segment of industry employs foreign-born workers, some in higher numbers than others, but native born US workers still make up the vast majority of the workforce.