Trump is threatening to block immigration over coronavirus. But immigrants are on the frontlines of the pandemic
Updated 12:55 PM ET, Tue April 21, 2020
(CNN)President Trump is threatening to impose new immigration restrictions over coronavirus, even though the United States has more confirmed Covid-19 cases than anywhere else in the world.
While details about Trump's plans remain unclear, we do know a lot about the role immigrants have been playing on the frontlines during the pandemic.
Foreign-born workers make up about 17% of the US civilian labor force. But they're an even bigger part of the workforce in many jobs that are key to fighting the virus and keeping the country afloat, according to a recent analysis by the Migration Policy Institute. Immigrants are also likely to be disproportionately impacted by layoffs, the institute said.
Here's a look at some key statistics about immigrant workers in the United States from that analysis and why these numbers matter right now:
6.3 million immigrants hold jobs that are key to fighting coronavirus
The Migration Policy Institute used 2018 census data to crunch the numbers.
Their estimate: 6,259,000 immigrants are working in jobs on the frontlines of the fight against coronavirus, including health care and social services; grocery stories, pharmacies and gas stations; manufacturing of food, medicine, soap and cleaning agents; agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting; bus, metro and taxi drivers; postal service workers; and scientific research and development.