The Emergence of the Socioeconomic Gradient in Health among Children in Immigrant Families

Margot Jackson, Brown University

Health is a marker of population welfare that is unequally distributed at birth. The association between parental resources and health is ambiguous among children in immigrant families, however, despite strong disparities in native-born families. Specifically, educational gradients in health are weaker among babies born to immigrant vs. native-born mothers, despite gradients among second-generation adolescents. These findings suggest that a gradient emerges within a generation. I use longitudinal data from the ECLS-B to ask: 1) when the educational gradient emerges among children in immigrant families; and 2) whether the gradient emerges more quickly among children who experience change in family circumstances.

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Presented in Session 215: Race, Ethnicity, Immigration and Children