Health Systems and Policy Research

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Editorial - (2023) Volume 10, Issue 3

California's sanctuary city laws and the mental health of Latinx immigrants

Kunal Pal*
Department of International Health, University of Tokyo Faculty of Medicine, Japan
*Correspondence: Kunal Pal, Department of International Health, University of Tokyo Faculty of Medicine, Japan, Email:

Received: 01-May-2023, Manuscript No. Iphspr-23-13547; Editor assigned: 03-May-2023, Pre QC No. Iphspr-23-13547; Reviewed: 17-May-2023, QC No. Iphspr-23-13547; Revised: 22-May-2023, Manuscript No. Iphspr- 23-13547 (R); Published: 30-May-2023, DOI: 10.36648/2254- 9137.23.10.184


This quasi-experimental study investigated whether "sanctuary city" regulations are a useful tool for lowering mental health disparities among Latinx communities in California according to immigration status. There is ample evidence that restrictive immigration policies cause mental health issues in people. Undocumented immigrants, documented immigrants, and native-born Latinxs are the three categories that are the focus of restrictive immigration laws; it is still unknown whether sanctuary city policies can enhance population mental health in these groups. We integrated information from the multi-year California Health Interview Survey on the health of nearly 142,000 adults, 6400 adolescents, and 13,000 children with information on the 482 communities in California regarding whether and when they adopted a sanctuary policy.


After comparing non-sanctuary cities to sanctuary cities using propensity score matching, we estimated respondent-level difference-in-differences models to ascertain whether, between 2007 and 2018, the policies of sanctuary cities have positive effects on the mental health of adults, adolescents, and kids [1]. After policy implementation, there was a trend towards improved mental health in sanctuary cities, but the mental health trends in the three Latinx immigration sub-groups of each age group did not match our expectations [2]. Other strategies, such as increased local access to mental health care, may be required to mitigate the negative consequences of strict federal immigration rules [3]. In terms of alternative treatment interference, citizens' policy awareness, the policy's ability to address prior health impacts, methodological concerns, and prospective policy momentum, we analyse these results [4]. Because the United States' immigration laws have become more stringent, Latinx people have been unfairly treated because of their real or perceived immigration status [5]. With more immigrants being detained and deported, including legal residents and citizens, the sociopolitical climate for immigrants has been worse, especially for those who are undocumented. For instance, from 2011 to 2013, up to 500,000 children with U.S [6]. citizenship had at least one parent deported. Latinxs have experienced more of an impact than other communities [7].


Mexicans make up the majority of persons who have been detained in the United States, followed by citizens of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala [8]. Immigration raids in areas with a high immigrant population are only one example of laws and practises that disproportionately affect Latinxs [9]. Work locations and checkpoints that need identification to prove immigration status [10]. Local towns have fought the U.S. government's severe immigration policies by designating themselves as "sanctuary cities [11]. We examined whether the sanctuary city laws that have been declared in order to protect immigrants are good for Latinxs' mental health [12]. There is a lot of evidence linking stringent immigration laws and mental health issues favourably [13]. Nevertheless, there is no research that looks at how sanctuary city policies might benefit the populations that are the targets of stringent immigration laws [14]. We integrated information from the extensive, multi-year California Health Interview Survey with information on whether and when California's 482 communities adopted a sanctuary city policy [15]. We examined whether sanctuary city policies preceded improvements in the mental health of Latinx kids and adults between 2007 and 2018 using our data on sanctuary city policies and CHIS data. Because Latinxs are disproportionately affected by immigration policy enforcement and make up a large section of the study's population, huge portion of the populace those sanctuary policies are meant to safeguard.


Because of its size and high immigrant population, California is a great place for this research. This environment, along with the sizable CHIS dataset that tracked the state's Latinx population over time, provided an exceptional chance to investigate whether sanctuary city policies lessen the disparities in Latinx mental health. The application of immigration law is racially biased. In far too many cases, being Latinx and being an immigrant or undocumented person have come to be synonymous. Based on racial and ethnic traits and behaviours, authorities and the general public frequently assume something about a person's ancestry and immigration status. Because they appear to be Latinx, officials may mistakenly imprison non-immigrant Latinxs, thinking they are immigrants or illegal.



Conflict of Interest



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Citation: Kunal Pal (2023) California's Sanctuary City Laws and the Mental Health of Latinx Immigrants. Health Sys Policy Res Vol. 10 No. Issue 3:177