The Decline in Summer Youth Employment: New Study Examines Immigration's Impact on U.S.-born Teens

By CIS on May 7, 2010

Contact: Steven Camarota, [email protected], 202-466-8185

WASHINGTON (May 2010) ─ While this summer is shaping up as one the worst ever for teen employment, a new report from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) finds that American teenagers (16-19 years old) have been leaving the labor force for some time, starting long before the current recession. The findings show that competition with immigrants accounts for a significant share of the decline in teen employment. The decline is worrisome because a large body of research shows that those who do not hold a job as teenagers often fail to develop the work habits necessary to function in the labor market, creating significant negative consequence for them later in life.

Many of the states where immigrants are the largest share of workers are also those with the lowest teenage labor force participation, including California, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, Florida, Hawaii, Texas, and Arizona.

CIS will release the report, "A Drought of Summer Jobs: Immigration and the Long-Term Decline in Employment Among U.S.-Born Teenagers," at a panel discussion Wednesday, May 12, at 9:30 a.m. in the Zenger Room of the National Press Club, 14th & F streets NW. Advance copies are available to the media. The report will be online at

The panel will include:

  • Steven Camarota, lead author of "A Drought of Summer Jobs: Immigration and the Long-Term Decline in Employment Among U.S.-Born Teenagers." Dr. Camarota is Director of Research at the Center for Immigration Studies.
  • B. Lindsay Lowell, Director of Policy Studies for the Institute for the Study of International Migration at Georgetown University. He was previously Director of Research at congressionally appointed U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform.
  • Daryl Scott, Professor and former Chair of the History Department at Howard University. Dr Scott is author of "Immigrant Indigestion: A. Philip Randolph Radical and Restrictionist.” In 2009 he helped draft a detailed proposal to overhaul the nation's immigration system, sponsored by the Brookings Institution and Duke University.

RSVP for the panel: [email protected]. Information on the report: [email protected] or (202) 466 8185.