New American Economy is a bipartisan research and advocacy organization fighting for smart federal, state, and local immigration policies that help grow our economy and create jobs for all Americans.
We make the economic case for immigration in four ways:
- We use powerful research to demonstrate how immigration impacts our economy.
- We organize champions at the grassroots and influencer levels to build support for immigration.
- We partner with state and local leaders to advocate for policies that recognize the value immigrants add locally.
- We show immigrant contributions to American culture through film, food, art, sports, comedy, and more.
Using Data and Personal Narratives to Frame Immigration
We tell a story of immigration that is about entrepreneurship, out-innovating our global competitors, and building prosperity in communities large and small across the country.
In NAE’s very first report, we found that more than 40 percent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children – a key takeaway that has shifted perspectives and laid the foundation for better conversations about the role of immigrants in our economy and society.
Alongside entrepreneurship, we have measured the value of immigrant contributions in every sector from healthcare to housing, tourism to tech, and farming to faith. For example, immigrants fuel our nation’s $100 billion agriculture industry, doing the toughest jobs that keep our farms running.
We have crunched the numbers on the economic contributions of immigrants in every state, every congressional district, and the top 100 major U.S. metro areas. We also document hundreds of individual stories to show the ways immigrants lift local industries, businesses, and communities.
Now a major resource for journalists, advocates, and policymakers, Map the Impact helps users understand how immigration shapes their local community.
Influencing the Influencers
Research and stories are only as good as the hands we put them in. We work across the political divide to equip people with the information and messaging they need to make the economic case for immigration.
We have led coalition-building efforts among business leaders, faith leaders, Hispanic leaders, GOP donors, and many more to help drive home an economic argument that we know both sides can understand and embrace.
In 2014, we teamed up with leaders from several grassroots conservative groups and the Tea Party Express to commission a poll. We discovered that despite the polarized rhetoric in the national debate, a majority of self-identified Tea Party voters supported Congress taking action to pass immigration reform.
In 2017, recognizing an opportunity to amplify our core economic arguments once again and spur Congress to take action, we partnered with Douglas Holtz-Eakin of the American Action Forum to publish a pro-immigration open letter signed by 1,470 economists – including six Nobel laureates.
That same year, as the Administration took steps to rescind DACA, we launched a coalition-led effort called the iMarch – a campaign powered by more than 100 partner organizations, with supporters and stories from every congressional district, to highlight our broken immigration system and push for an immediate solution for Dreamers.
With coverage in more than 100 media outlets, on-the-ground events in every state, a campaign hub inside the U.S. Capitol Building, and more than 4.5 million people reached on social media, the iMarch made waves. Celebrities took notice and politicians of every political stripe put aside their differences to rally around a solution for Dreamers.
Beltway and national voices are incredibly valuable for telling the economic story of immigration, but there are limits to their reach. To ensure that that even tough-to-persuade Members of Congress are hearing constantly from their constituents, we have worked with organizers in more than 100 districts across 33 states. Through public events, private meetings, opinion editorials, press conferences, editorial boards, and digital campaigns, our organizers have flooded Members of Congress with our message on their home turf.
State & Local Initiatives
They say all politics is local, right? While most of the debate about immigration focuses on congressional action (or inaction), local communities across the country are the ones who feel the value of immigration most tangibly.
Now active in more than 50 communities – more than 80 percent of which are in conservative states – the NAE State & Local team works with policymakers, business, and civic leaders to promote policies and programs that help create jobs and drive economic growth.
Around the country we have seen wins at the state and local levels that are changing the landscape and creating an environment where all residents can reach their full potential. This includes 30 municipal offices dedicated to immigrant inclusion; 23 local strategic plans for immigrant integration; tuition equity policies in 22 states; and 32 states plus Washington, DC that have a state Seal of Biliteracy.
In 2017, we released New Americans and a New Direction: The Role of Immigrants in Reviving the Great Lakes Region, a report drawing attention to the way immigrants have helped bring many Rust Belt cities back from the brink. We published the report in partnership with the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition, which, in turn, is using the report’s findings to press policymakers for reform.
NAE is also scaling our state and local work through the Gateways for Growth Challenge – a competitive opportunity offered in partnership with Welcoming America – for local governments, chambers of commerce, and non-profit organizations to jointly apply for tailored research, direct technical assistance, and matching grants to support their strategic planning processes.
One of the most valuable partners we have identified are local chambers of commerce. Chamber leaders understand that immigration is critical to growth, and they recognize the reliance local businesses have on immigrants as entrepreneurs, employees, and customers. We are delighted to include chambers of commerce from coast to coast in our Global Talent Chamber Network.
NAE started as an idea: What would happen if we tried to bridge a gap in our nation’s immigration debate?
What if we could see past deep-seated divisions that have stood in the way of progress on this issue, and instead talk about the true, measurable benefits of immigration?
What started as an idea has grown into a national movement fueled by groundbreaking research and grassroots advocacy. We have established a presence in every state, built lasting relationships across the political map, and generated significant buy-in from the media and other relevant influencers – in Washington, DC and well beyond.
We’re grateful for your support.