Masters Thesis

Child welfare and the conservation of Latino mixed-status families

The enforcement of immigration has dramatically increased over the past decade placing the immigrant population at significant risk for deportation (Zayas et al., 2015). Brabeck and Xu (2010) suggests that although there has been an increase in the deportations of undocumented immigrants there is limited research on the effects of immigration enforcement on mixed-status families. This study used an exploratory qualitative research design to capture the retrospective experience of U.S. citizen adult children of undocumented parents. Semi-structured interviews with eight respondents were conducted to examine the impact of parental detention or deportation on mixedstatus families’ well-being. Thematic analysis found that family dynamics were affected and child welfare and emotional well-being were jeopardized upon the detention or deportation of a parent or parents.