Americans are deeply divided over President Trump’s immigration policies. One thing that often goes unnoticed during the debates over those policies, is the impact they might have on senior citizens.
The economic effects of both legal and illegal immigration in the U.S. are extraordinarily complex and often difficult for laypersons to fully understand. Economists themselves have differing opinions on how immigrants impact wages, prices and economic growth.
One general economic principle, however, is fairly simple.
The smaller the total size of the labor supply, the more that businesses must pay for labor. That is basic supply and demand. Some of the increased cost that businesses have to pay for labor, may be passed on to consumers. However, the actual amount is a source of debate.
When these general principles are applied to immigration, both legal and illegal, there is a direct impact on the lives of the elderly as Financial Advisor points out in “Trump Immigration Moves Could Mean Big Bills For Seniors.”
Approximately one in four home health aides are immigrants. Some of them are here legally and some are not. Elder law and immigration law advocates are already starting to report that many of these immigrants are going into hiding, since they fear being deported. There is beginning to be a shortage in the labor supply for home health workers that are needed to keep the elderly in their own homes.
If this continues, it could force more seniors into nursing homes and assisted living facilities. That might also come with greater costs, since there are only so many available beds and many of those facilities also rely on immigrant labor.
While this shows that immigration law and elder law can be closely related, the full scale of President Trump’s plans are not yet known. This might also amount to much ado about nothing.
Reference: Financial Advisor (Feb. 17, 2017) “Trump Immigration Moves Could Mean Big Bills For Seniors.”
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