The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.

How immigrant parents move to the USA to sit with their grandchildren


Source: Post-gazette

When Rita Shechtman came to the United States from Ukraine in 1991, her two grandchildren were already living with their parents in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.I am. She and her husband arrived in the United States to look after the kids, who were then 6 and 7 years old, so that their parents would have time to work fully, writes Post-gazette.

Photo: Shutterstock

“I cooked, washed, drove them to school and did homework with them right up to college,” said 81-year-old Shechtman, now a US citizen.

According to her, in the US, childcare costs a lot of money, and not everyone can afford these expenses, so she was happy to come to the US and help children.

For years, immigrant grandparents have moved to the US, not for better jobs or lives, but to help their children raise their children.

And every year the number of such immigrants only increases.

Thanks to these international nannies, more immigrant mothers have the opportunity to fully work in the United States, and their children to learn the language and culture of their ancestors.

“I am proud to have helped. My grandchildren have grown up, but they call me every day to ask how things are going, ”Shechtman admitted.

According to a DC University study, Shechtman is part of a growing trend of older people coming to the US to look after their grandchildren.

Immigration to the United States of people aged 65 and over has increased from 9% in the 1990s to 12% today. And their arrival fills the US labor market in a peculiar way, since it frees young mothers from caring for children and allows them to work.

Scientists estimate that when immigrant grandparents live with their daughters and grandchildren, the share of daughters in the US labor force increases by 7,4%.

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They also suggest that the recent increase in the number of immigrants from China and India arriving to work in the US high-tech industries will soon lead to a wave of immigration from these grandparents' countries.

Many seniors come to the US on B-2 visas. These are tourist visas that allow people to stay in the country for up to six months. Between 2000 and 2014, the number of B-2 visas issued to people aged 50 and over increased from less than 5 million to about 13 million.

But not all grandparents who come to the States to babysit their grandchildren want to stay in the US for a long time.

Often a grandmother gets a B-2 visa, comes to the US and takes care of her grandchildren for 6 months, and then leaves back; then the grandfather comes on a B-2 visa and takes care of the grandchildren for the next 6 months. Sometimes grandparents on the other parent's side are involved in this cycle, which makes it possible to practically not leave children unattended and not look for nannies.

For example, in Philadelphia there are about 42 foreigners over the age of 000. About 60% of them live with their grandchildren, by comparison: of the 12 older Americans born in the US, only 225% live with their grandchildren.

On the one hand, they help, but on the other hand, it is much more difficult for older people to learn English, especially if they constantly have to stay at home with their grandchildren, so their adaptation in a new country is much longer and more difficult.

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