Author(s): Aroian K
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Abstract This article documents the emotional difficulties associated with the illegal Irish immigrant experience. Demographic data were collected and in-depth interviews were conducted with 17 Irish immigrants (13 had experiences as illegal immigrants and 4 were expert observers but did not have personal or first-hand experience on the topic). Content analysis of interview data documented positive and negative aspects of the illegal immigrant experience. Positive aspects included opportunity for adventure and the monetary benefit of illegal work. Negative aspects included difficulty finding satisfactory work, exploitation by employers, uncertainty about the future, vulnerability and fear over being apprehended and deported, and restrictions in numerous spheres of activity, including limited freedom to return home to visit family and friends. The findings sensitize mental health professionals to the difficulties experienced by illegal immigrants and provide direction for clinical interventions with this high-risk group.
This article was published in Issues Ment Health Nurs
and referenced in Journal of Nursing & Care