Cross-border Ties as Sources of Risk and Resilience : Do Cross-border Ties Moderate the Relationship between Migration-related Stress and Psychological Distress for Latino Migrants in the United States?

Author(s): Jacqueline M. TORRES, Carmela ALCÁNTARA, Kara E. RUDOLPH, Edna A. VIRUELL-FUENTES


Few studies have examined the associations between health and the cross-border ties that migrants maintain with their family members in communities of origin. We draw on theory related to social ties, ethnic identity, and mental health to examine cross-border ties as potential moderators of the association between migration-related stress and psychological distress among Latino migrants. Using data from the National Latino and Asian American Survey, we find that remittance sending is associated with significantly lower levels of psychological distress for Cuban migrants, and difficulty visiting home is associated with significantly greater psychological distress for Puerto Rican migrants. There were significant associations between migration-related stressors and psychological distress, although these associations fell to nonsignificance after accounting for multiple testing. We found little evidence that cross-border ties either buffer or exacerbate the association between migration-related stressors and psychological distress. We consider the findings within the current political and historical context of cross-border ties and separation

Tags: cross-border ties, stress, psychological distress, Latinos

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