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Illegal EncountersThe Effect of Detention and Deportation on Young People$
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Deborah Boehm and Susan Terrio

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781479887798

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479887798.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

Youth on Their Own

Youth on Their Own

(p.89) 5 Youth on Their Own
Illegal Encounters

Nina Rabin

Cecilia Menjívar

NYU Press

This chapter considers the experiences of youth with ties to Mexico who are living without their parents in the United States as a result of immigration enforcement. The authors analyze interviews with youth in Southern Arizona, about two thirds of whom were U.S. citizens, while the remainder were undocumented, DACA recipients, or had other forms of legal immigration status. The chapter considers the complex family structures and living arrangements of these youth. Their diverse experiences capture the varied and often heart-wrenching decisions immigrant families make about where young people are most likely to thrive. The youth described their sense of national belonging, their views of the U.S. government, their experiences with the detention and/or deportation of a parent, their language and cultural backgrounds, and their views of how the border shapes their hopes and dreams for the future. Many voiced a precocious sense of responsibility for their parents’ futures as well as an alarming misunderstanding of the viable legal options available to arrange legal residency or status for themselves and their families..

Keywords:   immigration, U.S. immigration law, citizenship, transnational families, Mexico

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