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Gender differences in mobility of Hispanic immigrants

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  • Matsuo, Miwa

Abstract

This paper examines the mobility of an increasingly important demographic group in the U.S., Hispanic immigrants. Using National Household Travel Survey data for 2009, this paper finds that, compared to the mobility of other populations, the mobility of Hispanic female immigrants is much lower, particularly when household income is low. Hispanic female immigrants are substantially less likely to be drivers than their male counterparts, and their probability of being a driver stagnates for decades after immigration, unlike female immigrants of other race/ethnicity groups. Hispanic female immigrants seem to remain non-drivers rather reluctantly. At the household level, Hispanic immigrants do not actively choose less auto-dependent lifestyles, and females clearly depend on others’ mobility. Yet once Hispanic female immigrants become drivers, they drive more than females of other race/ethnicity groups. Their high, hidden demand for driving is likely not related to domestic needs because their driving mileage is unassociated with child-caring duties, and is associated with household income level. The association between low-income status and driver status of Hispanic female immigrants has policy implications, especially if the barriers to becoming a driver limit Hispanic female immigrants' access to training or employment and contribute to their low-income status. More detailed analysis is anticipated to detail the mobility challenges Hispanic female immigrants face.

Suggested Citation

  • Matsuo, Miwa, 2016. "Gender differences in mobility of Hispanic immigrants," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 209-230.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:trapol:v:52:y:2016:i:c:p:209-230
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tranpol.2016.08.002
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