William Perez, Ph.D. Claremont Graduate University
Undocumented Status & Mental Health <ul><li>Is documentation status related to mental health, and if so, why and how? </li...
Acculturative Stress Model Financial Immigration Status-culture shock Environment Work/school Family Health Culture Change...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Undocumented adult Mexican immigrants are more likely to experience a traumatic event, hav...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Fear of deportation, in addition to being a source of stress and anxiety, may discourage u...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Arbonna et al. (2010) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>About one-third of the undocumented Latino imm...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Finch and Vega (2003) defined “legal status stress” as an acculturation stressor </li></ul...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Cavazos-Rehg et al. (2007) hypothesized that undocumented status is a “persistent and insi...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Undocumented Immigrants have reported loneliness, disorientation, isolation, feeling trapp...
Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Despite these findings, the long-term effects of fear of deportation on the psychological ...
Protective Factors <ul><li>Finch and Vega (2003) reported that Latino immigrants were able to buffer these social challeng...
Undocumented Children & Young Adults <ul><li>3.2 million undocumented children and young adults under the age of 24 </li><...
Uncertain Outlook <ul><li>As they transition into early adulthood undocumented young adults are met with extreme challenge...
Undocumented Adolescents <ul><li>Chavez (1998) reports children being harassed and detained by police and border agents at...
Undocumented Adolescents <ul><li>Potochnik and Perreira (2010)  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mental health stressors were prevale...
Acculturative Stress Model Financial Immigration Status-culture shock Environment Work/school Family Health Culture Change...
The Study <ul><li>Participants </li></ul><ul><ul><li>182 Latina/0 participants completed an online questionnaire </li></ul...
Distress Scale,  α =0.87 <ul><li>12-items </li></ul><ul><li>4-point Likert scale ranging from 1 (Never) to 4 (All the time...
Discrimination Scale,  α =.91 <ul><li>8-items </li></ul><ul><li>6-point scale ranging from 1 (None) to 6 (Once a week or m...
Rejection Due to Legal Status Scale,  α =.85 <ul><li>3-items </li></ul><ul><li>7-point Likert-scale ranging from 1 (Never)...
Comparisons High School (n=20) Community College (n=38) University (n=56) Graduate (n=20) Documented (n=34) Immigration Ag...
Comparisons Undocumented College Student (n=83) Documented College Student (n=13) Undocumented College Graduate (n=16) Doc...
Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>“ It shouldn't be, but it's more like I'm ashamed. I'm not like everyone else…I ...
Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>” I get scared of applying for scholarships. I still haven’t done my internship ...
Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>“ The uncertainty that you have…you kind of want to stick to looking at things m...
Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ There’s a lot of either shame or guilt in using those services becaus...
Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ In most cases, I feel like they feel alone and they feel like there’s...
Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>They are fearful that they can’t trust anyone or that anyone can unders...
Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ A lot of students feel that they do not belong just because…of their ...
Anti-immigrant Sentiment: Student Perspective <ul><li>We’re not like criminals, we’re not trying to steal anything from an...
Anti-immigrant Sentiment: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ They’re dealing with racism…hearing their professors talk...
Institutional Challenges <ul><li>There was one time when I told a counselor that I was AB540. Then he goes, “Oh, what’s th...
Stressors <ul><li>Students who are AB540 who don’t qualify for work study, they have to work late night shift, graveyard s...
<ul><li>Implications for Mental Health Researchers & Clinicians </li></ul>Conclusion
Implications for Mental Health Researchers <ul><li>More mental health research on undocumented adolescents and young adult...
Implications for Clinicians <ul><li>It is essential that school psychologists and counselors receive thorough training on ...
References <ul><li>Arbona, C., Olvera, N., Rodriguez, N., Hagan, J., Linares, A., & Wiesner, M. (2010). Acculturative stre...
Contact Information <ul><li>William Perez, Ph.D. </li></ul><ul><li>Associate Professor  </li></ul><ul><li>CLAREMONT GRADUA...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Latino mental health symposium 1-28-11

1,896 views

Published on

Undocumented Immigrant Youth: Implications for Mental Health Researchers and Clinicians. Research Presentation by William Perez, Ph.D., Professor, School of Educational Studies, Claremont University, at, "Latino Mental Health Symposium: The Mental Health Consequences of Immigration and Immigration Policies for Latino Adults, Children, and Families," Friday, January 28th, 2011, Pepperdine University.

Published in: Education, Health & Medicine
0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total views
1,896
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
3
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
36
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide
  • And this is where our study comes in. 171 current and former undocumented high school and college students from across the country participated in this study Participants were selected on the basis of snowball sampling. The participants pool consisted of 65% females and 35% males. Ethnically, 75% of them were Latinos 4% were Asian/Pacific Islander And 21% did not specify Of the 171 participants who completed an online survey, the first 102 were invited to take part in an in-depth, one-hour interview.
  • Latino mental health symposium 1-28-11

    1. 1. William Perez, Ph.D. Claremont Graduate University
    2. 2. Undocumented Status & Mental Health <ul><li>Is documentation status related to mental health, and if so, why and how? </li></ul><ul><li>Should documentation status be considered in the assessment of psychological and emotional well-being? </li></ul>
    3. 3. Acculturative Stress Model Financial Immigration Status-culture shock Environment Work/school Family Health Culture Change Acculturation Minority Status STRESS
    4. 4. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Undocumented adult Mexican immigrants are more likely to experience a traumatic event, have fewer economic and social resources, and are more marginalized and vulnerable to exploitation (Sullivan & Rehm, 2005). </li></ul><ul><li>Perceptions of social isolation and the uncertainty related to their undocumented status add to the stress associated with the immigration experience (Chavez, 1991; Hagan, Rodriguez, Capps, & Kabiri, 2003; Simich, 2006). </li></ul>
    5. 5. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Fear of deportation, in addition to being a source of stress and anxiety, may discourage undocumented immigrants from seeking help for employment, health, and language skill difficulties they encounter (Rodriguez & Hagan, 2004; Simich, 2006; Sullivan & Rehm, 2005) </li></ul>
    6. 6. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Arbonna et al. (2010) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>About one-third of the undocumented Latino immigrants in their study reported that they avoided activities such as walking in the street or requesting services from government agencies for fear of deportation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fear of deportation was the strongest predictor of extra- and intrafamilial acculturative stress among undocumented immigrants. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Men were more likely than women to be undocumented, to be separated from their nuclear families, and reported higher levels of extrafamilial stress, and greater fear of deportation. </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Finch and Vega (2003) defined “legal status stress” as an acculturation stressor </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Measured by fear of deportation and its consequences, avoidance of immigration officials, difficulty finding legal services, and limited contact with family and friends because of legal status. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>While acculturation stressors in general were moderately associated with poorer health, legal status stress alone significantly increased the likelihood of rating one's health as fair/poor. </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Cavazos-Rehg et al. (2007) hypothesized that undocumented status is a “persistent and insidious psycho environmental stressor” that increases Latino immigrants’ vulnerability to acculturative stress and other socioemotional problems. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Their findings showed that Latino immigrants concerned with deportation reported higher levels of extrafamilial acculturative stress (stress related to economic and occupational challenges) than immigrants who did not express deportation concerns. </li></ul></ul>
    9. 9. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Undocumented Immigrants have reported loneliness, disorientation, isolation, feeling trapped, depression, and sadness. Their marginality is reinforced by the ambiguousness of being “illegal” on one hand, while being unofficially welcomed through the economic “back door” on the other. These ongoing stressful experiences exacerbate health risks (Hall, Stevens, Meleis, 1994; McGuire & Georges, 2003; Ureta, 2001). </li></ul>
    10. 10. Undocumented Immigrants <ul><li>Despite these findings, the long-term effects of fear of deportation on the psychological functioning of Latino immigrants and their families remain unknown. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It is reasonable to expect that long-term exposure to stress associated with fear of deportation is likely to have a negative impact on an individual’s thoughts, emotions, and social functioning. </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. Protective Factors <ul><li>Finch and Vega (2003) reported that Latino immigrants were able to buffer these social challenges with the support of family members and significant others (e.g., peers, teachers, and community leaders). Results showed that participants reported better physical and psychosocial conditions when linked with high levels of social and emotional support. </li></ul>
    12. 12. Undocumented Children & Young Adults <ul><li>3.2 million undocumented children and young adults under the age of 24 </li></ul><ul><li>1.5 million were enrolled in grades K-12 in 2008 </li></ul><ul><li>65,000 high school graduates a year (The Urban Institute, 2003) </li></ul>
    13. 13. Uncertain Outlook <ul><li>As they transition into early adulthood undocumented young adults are met with extreme challenges despite having lived most of their lives in the U.S.: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They do not qualify for any type of federal financial aid regardless of their academic accomplishments. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They can not legally work. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In most states they must pay international student tuition fees. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They may be deported at any time. </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. Undocumented Adolescents <ul><li>Chavez (1998) reports children being harassed and detained by police and border agents at random bus stops simply because they looked Latino. In these environments, immigrant youth often feel a sense of imprisonment and paranoia. </li></ul>
    15. 15. Undocumented Adolescents <ul><li>Potochnik and Perreira (2010) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mental health stressors were prevalent in the lives of first-generation Latino immigrants. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Three-quarters of immigrant adolescents had been separated from their primary caregiver prior to their migration, and the average separation period lasted 3 years. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>During their journey to the United States, nearly a quarter (24%) experienced a stressful migration event. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>After migration, undocumented status was a common stressor among first-generation Latino youth. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compared with documented adolescents, undocumented adolescents were at greater risk of anxiety, and children in mixed-status families were at greater risk of both anxiety and depressive symptoms. </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Acculturative Stress Model Financial Immigration Status-culture shock Environment Work/school Family Health Culture Change Acculturation Minority Status STRESS Undocumented Status
    17. 17. The Study <ul><li>Participants </li></ul><ul><ul><li>182 Latina/0 participants completed an online questionnaire </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>66% female </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>57% grew up in two-parent household </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>102 in-depth student interviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>10 in-depth higher education staff interviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Participant observation </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Distress Scale, α =0.87 <ul><li>12-items </li></ul><ul><li>4-point Likert scale ranging from 1 (Never) to 4 (All the time) </li></ul><ul><li>Sample items: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Lately, do you feel sad” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Lately, do you feel others do not understand you?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Lately, do you cry easily?” </li></ul></ul>
    19. 19. Discrimination Scale, α =.91 <ul><li>8-items </li></ul><ul><li>6-point scale ranging from 1 (None) to 6 (Once a week or more) </li></ul><ul><li>Sample Items: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Over your lifetime, how frequently have you felt treated as if you were ‘stupid,’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Over your lifetime, how frequently have you felt ‘talked down to’ because of your race or ethnicity?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Over your lifetime, how frequently have you felt insulted, been called a name, or harassed because of your race or ethnicity?” </li></ul></ul>
    20. 20. Rejection Due to Legal Status Scale, α =.85 <ul><li>3-items </li></ul><ul><li>7-point Likert-scale ranging from 1 (Never) to 7(Always) </li></ul><ul><li>Sample items: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Because of my undocumented background, I feel that I am not wanted in this country.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Because of my undocumented background, I don’t feel accepted by other Americans.” </li></ul></ul>
    21. 21. Comparisons High School (n=20) Community College (n=38) University (n=56) Graduate (n=20) Documented (n=34) Immigration Age 5.74 7.14 7.61 9.18 8.0 Father’s Education 8.89 9.29 10.33 10.94 8.85 Distress 1.93a 1.99ab 2.22ab 2.39b 1.84ac Discrimination 2.61a 3.06ab 3.27ab 3.46b 3.06b Rejection due to Status 3.43a 4.49a 4.35a 4.11a NA
    22. 22. Comparisons Undocumented College Student (n=83) Documented College Student (n=13) Undocumented College Graduate (n=16) Documented College Graduate (n=19) Distress 2.13 1.97 2.34* 1.79* Discrimination 3.18 3.00 3.44 3.20
    23. 23. Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>“ It shouldn't be, but it's more like I'm ashamed. I'm not like everyone else…I don't have an ID, and I don't have a driver's license. If someone asked for an ID, I have to take out a passport, and especially now with all the immigration debates, I really don't want to speak out” (Jacinto). </li></ul>
    24. 24. Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>” I get scared of applying for scholarships. I still haven’t done my internship in broadcasting because I’m scared that whenever I get to go to a radio station, they might ask me for a social security card...I do get depressed and I get disappointed that, you know, I am doing all this work; and for me to graduate and not be able to work in the field that I want… instead I have to get another job instead of a job I love” (Esperanza). </li></ul>
    25. 25. Shame & Fear: Student Perspective <ul><li>“ The uncertainty that you have…you kind of want to stick to looking at things moment-by-moment, because if you look really far beyond, sometimes it gets you depressed…I don’t know what’s going to happen” (Carla). </li></ul>
    26. 26. Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ There’s a lot of either shame or guilt in using those services because…how other people view them is how they’ve internalized viewing themselves, that they shouldn’t even be getting any services because they’re undocumented and have no right to these kinds of services” (Rick, Academic Affairs Professional). </li></ul>
    27. 27. Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ In most cases, I feel like they feel alone and they feel like there’s no one that can help them, even though I say, “I’m here to be your advocate or I want to help you or I want to see you succeed,” they still feel like, “That’s great, but you can’t help me because nobody can help me.” So I would say loneliness is huge, lack of support, and then hopelessness” (Linda, Director of Student Affairs) </li></ul>
    28. 28. Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>They are fearful that they can’t trust anyone or that anyone can understand them. I’m sure that it can go as deep as students being depressed…they’re also dealing with the law too and this constant fear…Am I going to be deported? Do I have to worry about my family being deported?” That is a constant fear…they don’t feel permanent…any day it’s possible that things can change” (John, Academic Counselor). </li></ul>
    29. 29. Shame & Fear: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ A lot of students feel that they do not belong just because…of their status…also they’re a little apprehensive and afraid to disclose their status to others…Some of the parents are afraid that if their students go to school, somehow they will find out that they do not have documents” (Dennis, School Relations Coordinator). </li></ul>
    30. 30. Anti-immigrant Sentiment: Student Perspective <ul><li>We’re not like criminals, we’re not trying to steal anything from anybody…it’s hard because it’s like you find people that will put you down, and you’re like, “OK, should I continue? Is this going to get harder, or this is going to get better?” (Irene) </li></ul>
    31. 31. Anti-immigrant Sentiment: School Personnel Perspective <ul><li>“ They’re dealing with racism…hearing their professors talking about supporting the bill in Arizona or, ‘being against illegal immigration.’ You know, it might not necessarily be specifically directed at them…the teacher’s not necessarily sitting in front of them saying, ‘You,’ but making…general statements …on a daily basis where they have to deal with racism in their face” (John, Academic Counselor). </li></ul>
    32. 32. Institutional Challenges <ul><li>There was one time when I told a counselor that I was AB540. Then he goes, “Oh, what’s that?” I was like, “Oh, that’s…” and I started to explain. Then he goes, “Oh, does that exist?” “I’m like, yeah.” And he’s like, “Oh, but…you’re an immigrant, that’s what it is, right?” And I was like, “Yeah, but mainly, it’s a law that was passed and it allows us.” And he goes, “Oh, well, you still can’t make it in life, so why do you bother?” So I was like, “Whoa!” (Irene) </li></ul>
    33. 33. Stressors <ul><li>Students who are AB540 who don’t qualify for work study, they have to work late night shift, graveyard shift, heavier job, and at the same time trying to keep their grades up, which is mostly hard. I’ve seen students falling asleep during the class because they had to work all night and then come to school in the mornings” (Gail, Clerical). </li></ul>
    34. 34. <ul><li>Implications for Mental Health Researchers & Clinicians </li></ul>Conclusion
    35. 35. Implications for Mental Health Researchers <ul><li>More mental health research on undocumented adolescents and young adults </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Studies should focus on: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding how and when undocumented status stress and anxiety are triggered </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Frequency, and magnitude of undocumented status related stress/anxiety </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Development of mental health measures that capture: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Undocumented status related stressors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Undocumented status related protective factors </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Undocumented research collaborators </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Undocumented or formerly undocumented RA’s </li></ul></ul>
    36. 36. Implications for Clinicians <ul><li>It is essential that school psychologists and counselors receive thorough training on the socioemotional experiences of undocumented students (Dozier, 1993). </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some may still harbor anguish and resentment toward their parents, peers, and may not know how to deal effectively with such emotions. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>colleges that serve large numbers of undocumented students, and community-based mental health clinics are urged to invest in more specialized, cross-culturally sensitive psychologists and therapists that are adequately trained for working with issues related to undocumented status. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Psychoeducational workshops focusing on anxiety, alienation, depression, stress management, and post-traumautic stress disorder are just some of the services that can be made available to undocumented students. </li></ul></ul>
    37. 37. References <ul><li>Arbona, C., Olvera, N., Rodriguez, N., Hagan, J., Linares, A., & Wiesner, M. (2010). Acculturative stress among documented and undocumented Latino immigrants in the United States. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 32 (3), 362-384. </li></ul><ul><li>Cavazos-Rehg, P. A., Zayas, L. H., & Spitznagel, E. L. (2007). Legal status, emotional well being and subjective health status of Latino immigrants. Journal of the National Medical Association, 99 , 1126-1131. </li></ul><ul><li>Chavez, L. R. (1991). Outside the imagined community: Undocumented settlers and experiences of incorporation. American Ethnologist, 18 , 257-278. </li></ul><ul><li>Chavez, L. R. (1998). Shadowed lives: Undocumented immigrants in American society (2 nd ed.). Thomson Learning, Inc. </li></ul><ul><li>Finch, B. K., & Vega, W. A. (2003). Acculturation stress, social support, and self-related health among Latinos in California. Journal of Immigrant Health, 5 (3), 109–117. </li></ul><ul><li>Hagan, J., Rodriguez, N., Capps, R., & Kabiri, N. (2003). Effects of immigration reform on immigrants’ access to health care. International Migration Review, 37 , 444-463. </li></ul><ul><li>Hall, J. M., Stevens, P. E., & Meleis, A. I. (1994). Marginalization: A guiding concept for valuing diversity in nursing knowledge development . Advances in Nursing Science, 16 (4), 23-41. </li></ul><ul><li>McGuire, S., & Georges, J. (2003). Undocumentedness and liminality as health variables. Advances in Nursing Science, 26 (3), 185-196. </li></ul><ul><li>Potochnick, S. R., & Perreira, K. M. (2010). Depression and anxiety among first-generation immigrant Latino youth: Key correlates and implications for future research. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 198 (7), 470-477. </li></ul><ul><li>Rodriguez, N., & Hagan, J. (2004). Fractured families and communities: Effects of immigration reform in Texas, Mexico, and El Salvador. Latino Studies, 2 , 328-351. </li></ul><ul><li>Simich, L. (2006). Hidden meanings of health security: Migration experiences and systemic barriers to mental well-being among non-status migrants in Canada. International Journal of Migration Health and Social Care, 2 , 16-27. </li></ul><ul><li>Sullivan, M. M., & Rehm, R. (2005). Mental health of undocumented Mexican immigrants: A review of the literature. Advances Nursing Science., 28 , 240-251. </li></ul><ul><li>Ureta, C. G. (2001). A case study of the psychology of an undocumented Mexican woman immigrant . Unpublished doctoral dissertation: University of California, Berkeley. </li></ul>
    38. 38. Contact Information <ul><li>William Perez, Ph.D. </li></ul><ul><li>Associate Professor  </li></ul><ul><li>CLAREMONT GRADUATE UNIVERSITY  </li></ul><ul><li>150 East Tenth Street, Harper 212 </li></ul><ul><li>Claremont, California 91711 </li></ul><ul><li>323-610-2074 Phone </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.williamperezphd.com </li></ul><ul><li>www.facebook.com/williamperezphd </li></ul><ul><li>www.twitter.com/williamperezphd </li></ul><ul><li>www.youtube.com/williamperezphd </li></ul>

    ×