Bert Mason, Andrew Alvarado, & Robert Palacio
The primary focus of this conference is to examine the impacts and policy consequences of international migration to rural communities of California. Our assignment is to identify and discuss the immediate or eventual effects of the transformation of many rural communities into binational migration nodes on urban centers such as Fresno. We attempt to accomplish this assignment by first examining available secondary data on social and economic changes that have occured in Fresno during the past two decades. Included in this discussion are analyses of the growth and composition of population and employment, demographic changes and an assesment of potential effects of immigration-induced changes on public services, education and other socioeconomic indicators. At this point, we can only indentify potential rather than actual causality between immigration and socioeconomic changes. Within the context of rapid community change forged by numerous factors, it is also impossible to quantify the importance of these relationships.