Family influences on the emotional well-being of newcomer youth in Canada

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Chowdhury, Iqbal Ahmed
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An issue yet to receive much attention in the literature in medical sociology is how family systems may influence the emotional well-being of youth in Canada, particularly among newcomer youth. This study applies the family systems model of Kitzman-Ulrich and her colleagues as the principal theory to examine the emotional well-being of newcomer youth in Canada. Using data from the New Canadian Children and Youth Study (NCCY) on 979 newcomer youth, it explains how family systems and other factors may influence emotional health of newcomer youth. Data were analyzed using multiple approaches. The multivariate analysis includes seven Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) regression models – examining and comparing different groups: an overall model, and separate models for male, female, Mainland Chinese, Hong Kong Chinese, Filipino/a, and immigrant are performed. The results of this study reveal that variables within the family systems model are weak predictors of the presence of emotional problems among newcomer youth in Canada. Among four family systems variables used in the analyses, family cohesion, permissive parenting, and parental discipline are either weak or insignificant predictors; only parental praise is statistically significant. Furthermore, they are weak predictors compared with other factors beyond the family, such as age, time in Canada, being bullied at school, being immigrant, use of illegal/controlled substances, and being from a Mainland or Hong Kong Chinese group (for females only). The thesis ends with a discussion of limitations, future research, and policy suggestions.
Immigrant youth, Emotional Problems