Much has been made of the fact that immigrants, and unauthorized ones in particular, are draining money and services from the American people. Conservative politicians, right wing voices and Fox News hosts have banged this drum in particular for some time. However studies don’t bare this out.
According to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times, a study has shown that "3.1 million undocumented immigrants were working and paying Social Security taxes. Those contributions, estimated at $13 billion in 2010, mostly went into the administrative void. The workers who paid them had virtually no chance of ever collecting benefits either. In 2010, only $1 billion in benefits were paid based on unauthorized work".
So what does this mean for older adults who are receiving or who will soon receive Social Security benefits? It means that undocumented workers are helping to guarantee that you won’t loose your benefits and are even fattening up the entire system and making it more sustainable.
The conclusion is that for a country that is aging like the United States, immigration is an economic necessity to guarantee economically sustainable policies. It also means "the biggest threat to your Grandpa’s Social Security is coming from anti-immigrant and anti-worker ideologues like Sean Hannity and Mike Huckabee."
So get the facts before you vote or criticize immigration policies. Also, the next time you see an immigrant working to make ends meet and to send money home for their family, stop for a moment and thank them in your heart for helping to guarantee your retirement benefits.
Marc has 36 years in financial services and 6 years in teaching.
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