- Welfare use of migrants in the Netherlands
- International Journal of Manpower
- Volume | Issue number
- 34 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to examine interethnic differences in the degree of participation in social assistance, disability, and unemployment benefits during the working-age period.
Design/methodology/approach - Using individual register data of the entire immigrant population for 2005 from Statistics Netherlands, the paper employs standard probit models to estimate differences in welfare use between immigrant groups that are divided into the first and second generations.
Findings - The analysis shows that migrants from non-western countries, both first and second generation, have a higher probability of participation in social assistance and disability-benefit programs and to a lesser extent in unemployment-benefit programs. A large part of migrants’ welfare dependence can be explained by their background characteristics and immigration history, but a significant unexplained residual is still left. Strikingly, the degree of dependence of second-generation non-western migrants on social assistance is similar to their parents’.
Practical implications - A higher welfare dependency of non-western immigrants is probably related to the admittance policy. Most immigrants from developing countries are allowed to enter The Netherlands on humanitarian grounds, as family or asylum migrants.
Originality/value - This study is the first scholarly investigation of welfare use by immigrants and their descendants in The Netherlands. An additional novel feature is that the study covers three major social-welfare benefits for those aged between 19 and 64 years.
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