Spillover Effects: Immigrant Policing and Government Skepticism in Matters of Health for Latinos

Vanessa Cruz Nichols, Alana M.W. LeBrón, Francisco I. Pedraza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


To what extent do people become less trusting of the government under threatening policy contexts? The authors find evidence that Secure Communities, a bureaucratic program that enhances immigrant policing through collaboration between local law and immigration enforcement agencies, spurs mistrust among Latinos but not non-Latinos. This article focuses on the politics of immigration and health, two issue areas marked by large-scale bureaucratic developments over the last 50 years. The authors argue that a major consequence of expanding immigrant policing is its trickle-down effect on how individuals view public institutions charged with the provision of public goods, such as health information. The results indicate that Latinos in locales where immigrant policing is most intense express lower levels of trust in government as a source of health information. Through a policy feedback lens, the findings suggest that the state's deployment of immigrant policing conveys more widespread lessons about the trustworthiness of government.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)432-443
Number of pages12
JournalPublic administration review
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing


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