Coffee With The Author: Luis H. Zayas

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Coffee With The Author: Luis H. Zayas
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Coffee With The Author: Luis H. Zayas says
Join us over coffee for a 30-minute interview with KUT's Jennifer Stayton and author Luis H. Zayas about his book "Forgotten Citizens - Deportation, Children, and the Making of American Exiles and Orphans."

About the book:

In Forgotten Citizens, Luis Zayas holds a mirror to a nation in crisis, providing invaluable perspectives for anyone brave enough to look. Zayas draws on his extensive work as a mental health clinician and researcher to present the most complete picture yet of how immigration policy subverts children's rights, harms their mental health, and leaves lasting psychological trauma. We meet Virginia, a kindergartener so terrified of revealing her family's status that she took her father's warning don't say anything so literally she hadn't spoken in school in over a year. We hear from Brandon, exiled with his family to Mexico, who worries that his father will die in the desert trying to immigrate again.

Children like Virginia and Brandon have been silenced and their stories largely overlooked in the broader debates about immigration policy. As this book demonstrates, we can no longer afford to ignore them.

About the Author:

Luis H. Zayas was appointed as Dean of the School of Social Work in January 2012. Before joining UT Austin, Zayas was the inaugural Shanti K. Khinduka Distinguished Professor of Social Work and Professor of Psychiatry at Washington University in St. Louis. During his nearly ten years at Washington University, Zayas held the post of Associate Dean for Faculty from 2005-2007 and founded the Center for Latino Family Research in 2007. At Washington University, he taught social work practice courses; mentored doctoral dissertations, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate research assistants; led outpatient management rounds and psychotherapy seminars for psychiatric residents; and conducted research in diagnostic processes, suicide attempts of young Latinas, and adapting interventions for Latino children, youth and families.

Presently, Zayas is focusing on the plight of citizen-children whose parents are being deported. Through funding by the National Institute on Child Health and Human Development, he is examining the effects of deportation on the psychosocial functioning of U.S.-born citizen-children of undocumented Mexican immigrants. As a practitioner, Zayas is involved also in evaluating citizen-children and testifying in immigration courts on behalf of citizen-children and their families. This practice has also led to his public advocacy for citizen-children. In addition, Zayas continues his research on adolescent Latinas who have the highest rates of suicide attempts of any U.S. adolescent group.
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By: Holy Grounds

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