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The Receipt of Transfer Payments by Immigrants to Canada

Michael Baker and Dwayne Benjamin ()

Journal of Human Resources, 1995, vol. 30, issue 4, 650-676

Abstract: Using the native born as a benchmark, we examine immigrants' reliance on Canada's social safety net. Both in the raw data, and after conditioning on a variety of explanatory variables, we find that immigrants have lower participation rates in Unemployment Insurance and Social Assistance than natives. We also find that "assimilation" leads to greater participation in both these programs. There is a correlation of entry participation and vintage which indicates more recent immigrant cohorts have higher recipiency rates than their predecessors, holding years in the country constant. The results for Social Assistance contrast with U.S. evidence that the raw entry participation rates of many immigrant cohorts exceed the native rates. Finally, our analysis of rent subsidies tells a different story, in which immigrants initially have higher rates of participation which fall with assimilation.

Date: 1995
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