Study: Average Immigrant Household Costs Taxpayers 41% More in Welfare Benefits

By Penny Starr | May 9, 2016 | 3:15pm EDT
(AP Photo)

( – The Center for Immigration Studies released a study on Monday showing that the average household headed by an immigrant costs the goverment 41 percent moe in welfare benefits.

"The average household headed by an immigrant (legal or illegal) costs taxpayers $6,234 in federal welfare benefits, which is 41 percent higher than the $4,431 received by the average native household," the study said.

This follows an earlier CIS study that showed that 51 percent of immigrant-led households used as least one welfare program.

“Immigrants are such heavy users of welfare not because they don’t work, but because, on average, they have little education and thus earn low wages,” said CIS Executive Director Mark Krikorian. “If we continue to permit large numbers of less-educated people to move here from abroad, we have to accept that there will be huge and ongoing costs to taxpayers.”

CIS used data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) for the study.

• The average immigrant household consumes 33 percent more cash welfare, 57 percent more food assistance, and 44 percent more Medicaid dollars than the average native household. Housing costs are about the same for both groups.

• At $8,251, households headed by immigrants from Central America and Mexico have the highest welfare costs of any sending region — 86 percent higher than the costs of native households.

• Over 24 percent of immigrant households are headed by a high school dropout, compared to just eight percent of native households. In addition, 13 percent of immigrant households have three or more children, vs. just six percent of native households.

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