​Understanding Legal Issues for New Populations

This module is designed for the extension educator working in communities with immigrant populations. A general overview of this module includes demographics of new immigrant groups in the United States, their socio/economic history, and factors that will have implications for health and legal issues. The Bureau of Immigration and Citizenship data indicates that more than one million immigrants were granted legal permanent resident status during Fiscal Year (FY) 2002. Of this number, 384,427 were aliens who entered the U.S. on immigrant visas. Due to the continued increase in immigrant populations throughout the United States, there is a strong need to better prepare extension educators to work with these new groups in the community, understand the legal issues affecting them, and assist business and community organizations work with the legal implications. The following topics will be covered in this module:

Unit 1: Introduction

Unit 1: Introduction Handout

Unit 2: Legal Issues Relative to New Populations

Unit 3: Understanding Cultures - Building Bridges Across Cultures in Communities

Each unit in this module is complete within itself. It is recommended that the program commence with the Introduction, which provides an overview of the historical, as well as current immigration trends, by region and country of origin, and implications for communities were these populations tend to concentrate. Unit 1 is recommended as the second lesson. It briefly reviews the range of legal issues that will be addressed in greater detail in the subsequent units. Unit 2 builds a basic understanding of culture, an acceptance for cultural differences, and the economic and social benefits of building strong cultural communities.