August 2021

IZA DP No. 14646: De Facto Immigration Enforcement, ICE Raid Awareness, and Worker Engagement

published in: Economic Inquiry, 2022, 60 (1), 373 - 391

We explore whether fear of apprehension affects immigrants' labor market engagement by examining how ICE removals due to immigration violations and increased awareness of immigration raids impact their labor market outcomes. We find that ICE deportations are associated with reductions in the labor force participation and employment of likely undocumented immigrants when compared to similarly skilled foreign-born U.S.citizens. Effects are particularly strong among women, especially those with children, as well as in industries likely targeted by ICE raids. Controlling for perceived threats and de jure immigration policies has little impact on these results.