There are reasons to believe that refugees’ children may be particularly vulnerable to poor developmental and academic outcomes, given that their parents—and possibly the children themselves—fled violence and persecution, often arriving in the United States with little to no economic resources, social networks, or understanding of the country’s language and culture. For these reasons, one might expect children of refugees to face greater risks than children with immigrant parents who are not refugees. At the same time, the United States formally admits refugees and provides them with substantial initial resettlement assistance; these factors may protect refugees’ children—especially when compared with children of other immigrants who may be unauthorized.
In an attempt to fill the knowledge gap on integration outcomes for children of refugees, this report presents a demographic and socioeconomic data profile of the 941,000 children ages 10 and younger with refugee parents living in the United States in 2009-2013. The report finds that compared to children in other immigrant groups, children of refugees benefit from several protective factors, including strong family structures, high parental employment, and high parental education, all of which facilitate their successful integration.
The data support some general observations about the well-being of refugees’ children, despite their diverse backgrounds:
- Many children in refugee families benefit from protective factors such as strong family structures, high parental employment, and high parental education.
- Children of refugees also face risk factors such as low parental English proficiency and high poverty.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Young Children of Refugees in the United States: Integration Successes and Challenges | migrationpolicy.org