Salvadoran migration to the US in numbers

Good policy analysis requires good data.   With little commentary, here is a collection of the best data estimates I can assemble related to migration of individuals from El Salvador to the United States:

  • Estimated population living in El Salvador in 2017 — 6,582,000
    Source: El Salvador DIGESTYC
  • Estimated number of Salvadoran immigrants living in the US as of 2015 — 1,420,000
    Source: Pew Research Center
  • Estimated number of second generation Salvadorans in the US (at least one parent born in El Salvador) as of 2015 — 935,000
    Source: Migration Policy Institute
  • Estimated number of Salvadorans currently in US without legal documentation:  725,000
    Source:  Pew Research Center
  • Number of Salvadorans granted permanent residence in US (green cards) between October 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017:  18,800.
    Source: Pew Research Center
  • Estimated number of Salvadoran who re-enrolled for Temporary Protected Status by March 19, 2018 deadline:  175,000
    Source: El Salvador Foreign Ministry
  • Salvadoran youth who are recipients of DACA protection:  25,900
    Source:  USCIS
  • Salvadorans deported from the US back to El Salvador:

    January 1, 2017- December 31, 2017 – 15,691
    Source: El Salvador DGME

    January 1, 2018 – March 22, 2018 — 3129
    Source: El Salvador DGME

  • Unaccompanied minors from El Salvador apprehended at southwest US border:
    10/1/2015 – 9/30/2016  — 17,512
    10/1//2016 – 9/30/2017 — 9,143
    10/1/2018 –  2/28/20181,385 (3,324 annualized) 

    Persons in family units of at least one child with an adult apprehended at southwest US border:
    10/1/2015 – 9/30/2016  — 27,114
    10/1//2016 – 9/30/2017 — 24,122
    10/1/2018 –  2/28/20184,197 (10,072 annualized) Source: US Customs & Border Patrol  

  • Among all those persons worldwide who were born in El Salvador and now live either in El Salvador or elsewhere – 23% reside in the U.S
    Source:  Pew Research Center

Much could be said about these numbers, but I will only point out two items.   First, note the fairly dramatic reduction in levels of child and family migration across the southwest US border since October 2015 as measured by apprehensions.  Second, note the approximately 18,800 persons deported since January 1, 2017 and compare that to the 144,360 pending deportation cases against Salvadoran nationals and the additional 200,000 Salvadorans who are losing TPS next year.   El Salvador is facing a wave of returnees much, much larger than it is currently experiencing.