Vesely, Colleen K., Letiecq, Bethany, Davis, Elizabeth, Goodman, Rachael, DeMulder, Elizabeth, Marquez, Marlene, "The spirit of a fighter": Mixed‐status Latine immigrant families'," Family Relations, Jul2024, Vol. 73 Issue 3, p1483-1500.

Using a community‐based participatory research (CBPR) approach, this study documents Latine immigrant families’ work, childcare, and education experiences during the COVID‐19 pandemic to inform policy and practice to support Latine families. Background: Latine immigrant communities, comprising undocumented and mixed‐status families, were among the hardest hit by the COVID‐19 pandemic. In addition to employment and housing challenges, children and families lost access to the important academic supports and social services built into childcare programs and schools. Method: For this study, we collected in‐depth qualitative interview data from mothers who were immigrants from Central America and Mexico (N = 23) as part of an ongoing CBPR project. Using community coding techniques, data were analyzed in partnership with our Community Advisory Board, Amigas de la Comunidad. Results: In the context of illegality, participants and their families who already feared deportation and family separation, faced added burdens during the pandemic including job loss, school and childcare closures, and isolation. Parents worried about meeting their families’ basic needs, getting sick, losing loved ones to COVID‐19, and being evicted from their housing. Conclusion: While participants shared stories of resilience and resistance, they also reflected on stories loss and hardship—experiences that were exacerbated by anti‐immigrant laws and policies that made navigating the pandemic especially punishing for immigrant families. Implications: On the basis of study findings, program and policy implications for serving Latine children and youth and their immigrant parents, especially those with mixed documentation status, are discussed.