Journal of Urban Health

, Volume 88, Issue 3, pp 403–416

I Used to Cry Every Day: A Model of the Family Process of Managing Displacement

  • Danielle Greene
  • Parisa Tehranifar
  • Lourdes J. Hernandez-Cordero
  • Mindy Thompson Fullilove
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11524-011-9583-4

Cite this article as:
Greene, D., Tehranifar, P., Hernandez-Cordero, L.J. et al. J Urban Health (2011) 88: 403. doi:10.1007/s11524-011-9583-4

Abstract

Community displacing events, natural or human made, are increasing in frequency. By the end of 2009, over 36 million people were known to be displaced worldwide. Displacement is a traumatic experience with significant short- and long-term health consequences. The losses and costs associated with displacement—social connections, employment, property, and economic capital—are felt not only by the displaced individuals but also the communities they have left behind, and the communities that receive displaced individuals. Many researchers have explored the link between health and reduced social, cultural, and economic capital. Most of the displacement literature focuses on the effect of displacement on the displaced individual; however, many families move as a group. In this study, we examined the family process of managing displacement and its associated capital losses by conducting interviews with 20 families. We found that families undergo a four-phase process of displacement: antecedent, uprooting, transition, and resettlement. The losses families experience impact the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities. The degree to which the displacement process ends successfully, or ends at all, can be affected by efforts to both create connections within the new communities and rebuild economic and social capital.

Keywords

Displacement Upheaval Family process Refugee Uproot Capital 

Copyright information

© The New York Academy of Medicine 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danielle Greene
    • 1
    • 2
  • Parisa Tehranifar
    • 1
    • 3
  • Lourdes J. Hernandez-Cordero
    • 1
    • 4
    • 6
  • Mindy Thompson Fullilove
    • 1
    • 5
    • 6
  1. 1.Department of Sociomedical SciencesColumbia University Mailman School of Public HealthNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Bureau of Environmental Disease PreventionNew York City Department of Health and Mental HygieneNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Department of Epidemiology, Columbia University of Mailman School of Public HealthColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  4. 4.Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia University of Mailman School of Public HealthColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  5. 5.Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia University of Mailman School of Public HealthColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  6. 6.Community Research GroupNew York State Psychiatric InstituteNew YorkUSA

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