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National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum. “Immigration Reform and the Impact on Pregnant and Birthing Asian and Pacific Islander Immigrant Women.” Issue Brief, February 2007.


This report addresses how Asian and Pacific Islander immigrant women face unique challenges and barriers as an immigrant women pregnant and giving birth in the United States. According to this report, anti-groups have increasingly targeted these women because of their childbearing age by supporting unjust federal immigration policies. As a result, many Asian and Pacific Islander immigrant women do not seek or utilize public health preventive and emergency medical services because of the fear of deportation or loss of lawful residency status. For those who do seek and receive medical and health treatment, they not only struggle with language and cultural differences but also with the paperwork of citizenship verification requirements. Essentially, this poses a threat by creating a risk of poor health outcomes due to restricted basic health and social services. The report speaks to the need for improved language access for immigrants who have limited English proficient (LEP). Without the support from policymakers and advocates, Asian and Pacific Islander immigrant women will continue to endure difficulty in deciding to not have children, or giving birth in a country that places little values on immigrant motherhood.  This report engages the reader with real intriguing stories encompassing the immigration debate. The first story discusses how an undocumented Chinese immigrant woman and her American newborn baby were disqualified from a Toys “R” Us sweepstake because of their nationality. The second story shares how Jiang Zhen Xing, miscarried her two twins after federal immigration officers forced her into their van and denied her requests for medical care because they wanted her immediately deported back to China. Both stories highlight how immigrant women were treated as second-class citizens. Additionally, these stories and the continuous immigration debate speak to the financial, linguistic, cultural and healthcare burdens immigrant women of all races have to overcome to ensure a healthy life for themselves and their children born in the U.S. This article is recommended for those who are interested in learning more about anti-immigrant supporters, the anti-choice movement and the 14th amendment debate to deny newborns their birth citizenship rights and legal and federal policy from the earlier 2000s.


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Related Topics

Movement building   Coalitions   Birthing   Government regulation   Intersectionality   Human rights   Health care   Pregnancy   Immigrants   Race/ethnicity: Asian American/Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander