Research and Engagement Strategies for Young Adult Immigrants Without Documentation: Lessons Learned Through Community Partnership
- Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 10, Issue 3, Fall 2016
- pp. 373-382
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Background: Limited research has focused on undocumented immigrants’ health and access to care.
Objectives: This paper describes participant engagement strategies used to investigate the health needs of immigrants eligible for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Methods: Community-based strategies engaged advocates and undocumented Californians in study design and recruitment. Outreach in diverse settings, social media, and participant-driven sampling recruited 61 DACA-eligible focus group participants.
Lessons Learned: Social media, community-based organizations (CBOs), family members, advocacy groups, and participant-driven sampling were the most successful recruitment strategies. Participants felt engaging in research was instrumental for sharing their concerns with health care providers and policymakers, noteworthy in light of their previously identified fears and mistrust of government officials.
Conclusions: Using multiple culturally responsive strategies including participant-driven sampling, engagement with CBOs, and use of social media, those eligible for DACA eagerly engage as research participants. Educating researchers and institutional review boards (IRBs) about legal and safety concerns can improve research engagement.