Immigration legal services as a structural HIV intervention for Latinx sexual and gender minorities

J Immigr Minor Health

Lack of legal immigration status is associated with poor HIV-related outcomes for immigrant Latinx sexual and gender minorities (LSGM). LSGM often meet eligibility criteria for legal immigration relief. A Medical-Legal Partnership (MLP) may thus be strategic to improve their health. We know little about the challenges LSGM face during the immigration legal process. We conducted in-depth interviews with six key informants and sixteen LSGM who recently applied for immigration legal relief. We coded and analyzed the data for emergent themes. Challenges to instituting an MLP for LSGM included lack of specialized training on working with SGM for immigration attorneys, and for clients: knowledge about legal deadlines, lack of housing and family support, and re-traumatizing experiences. Clients’ outcomes were positive when attorneys and mental health providers collaborated. For LSGM, the benefits of immigration relief included reduced HIV risk. An MLP that addresses the surmountable challenges could improve HIV-related outcomes among LSGM.

Yamanis TJ, Zea MC, Ramé Montiel AK, et al. Immigration legal services as a structural HIV intervention for Latinx sexual and gender minorities. J Immigr Minor Health. 2019;21(6):1365‐1372. PMID: 30465116. DOI: 10.1007/s10903-018-0838-y.

Publication Year: 
2019
Resource Type: 
Peer Reviewed Research
Study Design: 
Other Study Design
Social Determinant of Health: 
Legal Services
Population: 
Immigrants
Outcomes: 
Process
Social Needs/ SDH
Screening Research: 
No