Oct. 16, 2018– Just weeks ahead of the midterm elections in New Jersey, immigration policy has emerged as a top issue for voters. While the political rhetoric on immigration may overlook important nuances about the complexity of this issue, it remains critical for the public to understand the contributions immigrants make to communities in New Jersey .
The American Immigration Council has extensive data on the population size, educational and citizenship attainment, English proficiency levels, and tax contributions of New Jersey ’s immigrant population.
The Council’s fact sheet, Immigrants in New Jersey, shows that the state has a large immigrant community, much of which hails from India. More than 22 percent of the New Jersey’s population was born in another country, while nearly 1 in 6 residents is a native-born U.S. citizen with at least one immigrant parent. Foreign-born residents are vital to New Jersey’s workforce, with immigrants accounting for nearly half of all workers in the computer and math sciences and roughly 44 percent of production employees.
The fact sheet also reveals that immigrants in New Jersey account for 27.8 percent of the state’s labor force and have paid $13.1 billion in federal taxes and $6.5 billion in state and local taxes in 2014. As consumers, immigrants spent $54.6 billion on New Jersey’s economy in 2014. Immigrant entrepreneurs in New Jersey generated $3.3 billion in business revenue in 2015.