Becoming The New US
According to research from the UNH Carsey School of Public Policy, 1.6 million rural residents in the United States are foreign born—and more immigrants are moving to rural communities every year. Immigrant families move to rural communities seeking the same qualities and values cherished by long-term residents. They want good and safe schools, opportunities to work, an affordable place to live, and close-knit neighbors. But the “good life” can be out of reach for many immigrants, especially those living in poor and isolated rural places. At the same time, welcoming a host of residents from other cultures who have complex legal, language, and housing circumstances can be challenging — it’s a new situation for most rural leaders.