SSN Commentary

Immigrant and Undocumented Youth Are Being Caught Up in the U.S. Mental Health Crisis, Too

Policy field

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George Washington University

Originally published in The San Diego Union-Tribune on July 20, 2023.

A new data brief from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published last month found that in 2021, suicide and homicide were the second and third leading causes of death for young people from the ages of 10 to 24, respectively. This is not new. Suicide was second in 2019 and 2020, per CDC data, a troubling trend preceding the pandemic.

The data paint a sobering picture of youth mental health in the United States: It’s an image of emotional distress that immigrant and undocumented youth know all too well for far too long.