Do they just keep on moving or do they go home?: internal migration of Mexican-origin, Puerto Rican origin, and other Hispanics in the US

E. Helen Berry, Utah State University
Sang Lim Lee, Utah State University
Eduardo Ortiz, Utah State University
Michael B. Toney, Utah State University

Over the past twenty years, since the United States’ immigration reforms of the mid-1980s, the emphasis of academic research has been on the immigration of Latinos into the U.S. Analysis of Latino internal migration has tended to focus on whether their place in the U.S. labor markets and cultural milieu is one of spatial, segmented, or classical assimilation. There has been a growing body of literature on new destinations for Hispanic immigrants and on their spatial impacts on rural and urban communities but few analyses have disaggregated Hispanics into any of their distinctive ethnic backgrounds, e.g. Mexican (the largest group) or Puerto Rican, the second largest group. This analysis utilizes the National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth, 1979, to follow the migration experiences of Mexican-origin, Puerto Rican, and non-Mexican origin Latinos. Examination of each group’s migration propensities for primary, return or onward migrations are examined as these are related to the socioeconomic characteristics of each group and whether or not they tend to move toward or away from places with greater involvement in metro or nonmetro economies. All groups are more likely to move toward metropolitan places and onward migration is more likely than return migration for Hispanics.

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Presented in Session 27: Internal Migration of Foreign Populations and Minority Groups