The Health and Well-Being of Newly “DACAmented” Immigrant Young Adults in Maryland
This project examines the health and well-being of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients living in Maryland. In June 2012, the Obama Administration announced the DACA program, which provides undocumented young adults who came to the United States as children temporaryrelief from deportation and legal work authorization. Despite these gains, DACA recipients still face exclusion in the realm of health care, as they are barred from federally-funded public insurance and may not be offered employment-based insurance. They are also likely to suffer from the health effects of growing up undocumented, including anxiety and depression, which can affect their overall well-being. Using a mixed-method research design consisting of semi-structured interviews and surveys, this project investigates: 1) how receiving DACA has influenced recipients’ access to health care and health-seeking practices, 2) whether receiving DACA has improved recipients’ mental health and/or other chronic health conditions, and 3) how DACA has affected recipients’ overall well-being and sense of belonging. Much of the focus of the nascent research on DACA has been on educational access and workforce participation; the health and well-being of DACA recipients is understudied, yet influences recipients’ abilities to gain incorporation in these other realms. The project is being carried out by Dr. Getrich and a group of UMD graduate and undergraduate anthropology students, who have participated in project conceptualization, participant recruitment, data collection, and data analysis.
BSOS Dean’s Research Initiative—University of Maryland
Research and Scholarship Award (RASA)—University of Maryland