Participation in the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program as Reported by Documented and Undocumented Farm Worker Adults in the Households

J Paul Leigh, Alvaro Medel-Herrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Debate surrounds the provision of Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits to undocumented immigrants. Few studies are available to estimate use of WIC services by documented and undocumented households using nationally representative data. The authors analyzed data from the National Agricultural Workers Survey (NAWS) annual cross-sections from 1993 through 2009 (N = 40,896 person-years). Household documentation status is defined by the status of the adults in the household, not children. Simple mean differences, logistic regressions, and time charts described household participation in WIC over 2-year intervals. Without adjustments for covariates, 10.7% of undocumented farm workers’ households and 12.4% of documented households received WIC benefits, yielding an odds ratio of 0.84 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.76–0.94). Logistic regressions revealed that for the same number of children in the household, participation by undocumented persons was higher than participation by documented persons. Time charts and logistic regressions with interaction terms showed a stronger correspondence between participation in WIC and number of children

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)409-418
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Agromedicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2 2015



  • Health services
  • immigrants
  • low-income

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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