As a leading health care provider, Planned Parenthood health centers understand that health as a society and global community is linked — the threat of detainment and deportation compound health disparities in many immigrant communities. In the United States, the consequences of being undocumented keep too many from accessing the lifesaving care they need.
The stakes are high for undocumented immigrants, many of whom forgo care instead of risking deportation when visiting a health care provider. Due to the many barriers in accessing basic health care and information, immigrants face challenging and life-endangering health care disparities.
Health Care Disparities: Women and Men
Many women in immigrant communities are more likely (PDF - Nuestro Texas) to die from breast and cervical cancers, and some immigrant groups have higher rates of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections than other groups in the U.S. — all of which could be screened for, and in some cases prevented, with equal access to care.
Health Care Disparities: Transgender Women and Men
Across the country, trans detainees are being denied hormone replacement therapy and other medical necessities. Trans women held in detention centers face overwhelming violence, and are often placed in men’s detention centers, segregated facilities, or solitary confinement. They are subject to sexual assault, humiliation and abuse.
The attacks on sexual and reproductive health care have a disproportionate impact on undocumented immigrants who already face a maze of barriers when accessing care. They are caught in the intersection of anti-immigration and anti-reproductive and sexual health rhetoric, which makes accessing the care they need extremely difficult.
In states dominated by hateful, anti-immigrant sentiment, we've seen that attempts to block people from receiving reproductive care has coincided with the increased funding to border militarization efforts. For undocumented immigrants, anti-immigrant and anti-choice convictions can be a matter of life or death.
The mission of Planned Parenthood health centers is to make sure all people — regardless of income, insurance coverage, or immigration status — receive the health care they need to lead healthy and full lives. The ability to stay together, in the same country, as a family is an integral part of what it means to have a complete life. Planned Parenthood health centers are proud to serve everyone - no matter what.