Dallas, Texas: Immigrants contribute billions to local economy

In 2022, immigrant households in dallas earned $10.7 billion in income, according to a study by the American Immigration Council.

DALLAS — A study showing the impact of immigrants on Dallas' economy in 2022 revealed billions of dollars in contributions to the local economy.

The study was released amid other reports that Texas is one of the fastest-growing states in the country and added more Hispanic, Asian and Black residents than any other state last year.

The study was conducted by the American Immigration Council, a nonprofit that advocates for immigrants through education and legal support, according to the organization's website. The report was prepared in partnership with the city of Dallas, which found that the 299,800 immigrants living in the city in 2022 made up 23.2% of the total population.

In 2022, immigrant households earned $10.7 billion and about $9.1 billion of that may have gone to the state and local economy, with about $900 million being paid to state and local taxes. That leaves about $8.2 billion to spend in the local economy, which makes up about 20% of the total spending power in Dallas. 

The study also highlighted individual immigrants living in Dallas who contribute to the local economy. Maria Mosomi, who immigrated to California from Tanzania with her family at age 8, worked her way through school to become a psychiatric nurse practitioner, according to the study. Today, she is the CEO of a Dallas practice that sees about 200 patients a week. 

“The impact is made one person at a time, and it trickles down,” Mosomi stated, according to the study. “When people are physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy, they produce communities that are economically stronger, as well.”

The Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is a popular destination for both immigrants from abroad and foreign-born people moving domestically, such as Mosomi, a study from the George W. Bush Institute-SMU Economic Growth Initiative also found. 

That study, published in 2022, outlines strategies for attracting and retaining immigrants to the region. It also found that immigration prevents many U.S. cities and metros from shrinking in population, which would hurt the city's economy. 

Immigrants were also less likely than Dallas' U.S.-born population to live below the federal poverty line and receive Medicaid or Medicare, the study found.

According to the study, immigrants were significantly more likely than their U.S.-born counterparts to be of working age, meaning they were more likely to participate in the economy. Immigrants also have an outsized share of the employed labor force and workers in the STEM field, the study states.

The industries with the highest number of immigrant employees were construction, manufacturing and hospitality.

Immigrants were also 60% more likely to be entrepreneurs than their U.S.-born counterparts, representing 38.9% of business owners in Dallas. Immigrant entrepreneurs generated $804.8 million In business income, the study found.


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