Migration Policy Institute

Published:  

The Migration Policy Institute released a recent report showing that “more children of refugees receive cash assistance (and other welfare benefits) than other U.S. children.” Around 30% of refugee children receive welfare benefits compared to 26% of nonrefugee immigrant children.

The report centered around 941,000 children ages 10 and younger with refugee parents living in the United States from 2009-2013. Even though refugee children receive more welfare benefits than nonrefugee immigrant children they are less likely to live in families with low income below the federal poverty level (FPL). During 2009-13 25% of refugee children lived in families below the FPL while 28% of nonrefugee immigrant children lived in families below the FPL.

The report cites that one reason for this increase is that refugees are granted lawful permanent residence and access to all federal benefits including food stamps, healthcare, and cash assistance immediately after arriving in the U.S. as a refugee compared to the five years or more for other legal immigrants.

Last year the Obama administration said it would increase the current level of refugees from 70,000 to 85,000 this year. According to Robert Rector, a Heritage Foundation scholar, the president's plan would cost U.S. taxpayers $130 million per year and up to to $6.5 billion in the next 50 years.

Read more on this story at The Washington Examiner.

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Updated: Tue, May 10th 2016 @ 2:50pm EDT