Latino USA

Archive for the ‘Immigration’ Category

“Lost in Detention” Special Preview

Immigration has been a key issue across the political arena, but despite all the promises, the prospects for comprehensive immigration reform are scarce. Last year, President Obama’s administration set a new record for detaining and deporting undocumented immigrants under the Secure Communities enforcement program. The program was set up to target and deport dangerous criminal immigrants, but has that always been the case? In her upcoming FRONTLINE documentary “Lost in Detention,” Maria Hinojosa takes an in-depth look at the enforcement of the Secure Communities program, and explores the hidden world of immigration detention. What she and the FRONTLINE Investigative team found, is shocking and unimaginable. And we have a special preview on Latino USA. Watch the one-hour FRONTLINE documentary “Lost in Detention” on October 18th at 9pm on PBS.


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Manu Chao in Arizona

It’s rare to find a popular musician these days who embraces a controversial political message, but that’s precisely what Manu Chao has done in his career. Originally from France, but his music transcends borders. Manu Chao’s songs speak of poverty and world politics, often in multiple languages – and his stardom has brought attention to many issues around the world.
Most recently, the singer was in Arizona, standing in solidarity with protesters against the infamous Maricopa County Sheriff, Joe Arpaio. Maria Hinojosa speaks with filmmaker Alex Rivera who was in Arizona with Manu Chao, documenting the protest and impromptu concert.

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The White House on Secure Communities and Deportations

Last year more than 400,000 immigrants were deported from the U.S. – a record number. Many were apprehended under a controversial program known as Secure Communities – a deportation program designed to go after violent criminal aliens. Yet, many non-criminals have been apprehended because of it. Now, the Obama administration announced it would review all pending immigration cases and would prioritize the deportations of undocumented violent offenders over undocumented immigrant workers. María Hinojosa discusses the issue with Luis Miranda, Director of Hispanic Media at the White House.


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Conservatives for Immigration Reform

While Secure Communities has its critics, there are many Conservatives who see strong immigration enforcement as a prerequisite for any immigration reform. Many have been supportive of the President’s tough policies believing they’ll lead to comprehensive immigration reform. Maria Hinojosa talks to conservatives, Samuel Rodriguez, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference President, and Mark Shurtleff, Utah’s Attorney General, about the immigration debate.


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Roundtable Debate About the Current Administration and Latinos

As Presidential campaigning begins to heat up, eyes are once again being cast on the Latino vote. Even Obama is in on the action, making visits this month to Puerto Rico and El Paso, Texas in hopes of wooing the Latino electorate.

But unlike 2008, the President is receiving a lukewarm reception, because this time around it’s more than just about jobs and the economy for Latinos. It’s about immigration. Now many Latinos are upset with Obama and the Democrats’ for their inaction on the issue, and equally offended by the Republican’s hostile anti-immigrant rhetoric. So what will it mean in the next election if immigration reform isn’t addressed? Will Latinos become disillusioned and not vote? Will they abandon support of the President? Or will they put their hopes in Obama’s second term?

Maria Hinojosa talks to Maria de los Angeles “Nena” Torres, Director and Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of Illinois in Chicago and Maria Teresa Kumar, Executive Director of Voto Latino, to find out how Latinos will push back on their lawmakers – both at the polls and on the streets.

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An Ancient People in Exodus

Nearly half of Guatemala’s 14-million people are Mayan, whose first language is not Spanish. Through the years, they have preserved their ancient culture and over two-dozen languages indigenous to their different rural communities. These days, it is estimated that 1 out of 10 Guatemalans have migrated to the United States, many of them, Mayan.

In this special report funded by the Paul Robeson Fund, Latino USA’s Maria Martin visits some of the indigenous communities to find out why so many Mayans leave their families and their strong cultural traditions, and what happens when they return home.


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Arizona, One Year After SB 1070

This week marks one year since the controversial SB 1070 immigration bill was signed in Arizona. Although a federal judge issued an injunction against parts of the law and SB 1070 never took full effect, it had a variety of consequences. It started a wave of copycat legislation throughout the country and prompted many states to take on immigration reform on the local level. Back in Arizona, the bill had yet another effect – it prompted many immigrants, both undocumented and with papers, to become involved in the political process. Reporter Valeria Fernandez of Feet in Two Worlds, a project that brings the work of immigrant journalists to public radio, has the story.

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Utah’s New Approach to Immigration

The passage of Arizona’s SB 1070 started a dialogue about immigration that prompted some states to start passing their own immigration laws in the absence of comprehensive reform at the federal level. In the red state of Utah the government is hoping to implement a unique approach to immigration. They passed a similar bill to Arizona’s SB1070, but also passed two other bills that create a guest worker program and offer undocumented immigrants legal status. States aren’t allowed to create their own immigration policies, but Utah’s Attorney General Mark Shurtleff is hoping the federal government will grant Utah a special waiver. He initiated the conversation about having a guest worker program, and is hoping the president will consider adopting it as a national strategy. Maria Hinojosa spoke with Mark Shurtleff about the thinking behind Utah’s new approach to immigration.

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Domestica en America

They work in our homes, our gardens, restaurants, and they are our neighbors — but what we don’t realize is they live everyday in fear of being deported. More than 11 million undocumented immigrants live in the United States and often they are voiceless, invisible, and afraid to stand up to injustice. But despite their immigration status, they are people just like every other American with their own unique stories.

Independent Producer and Latino USA contributor Maria Martin brings us the story of one invisible migrant that will touch your heart.

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Rally On The U.S.-Mexico Border

In the past three years, drug-related violence in the Mexican city of Juarez has taken more than 7,000 lives. About 200 of the victims were Americans, among them students, teachers, nurses, and government employees. Juarez is the deadliest city in Mexico. And only a chain link fence separates it from El Paso, Texas.

Last week, that fence was just a formality as hundreds of people from both sides of the border joined together to raise awareness. Monica Ortiz Uribe reports that’s not an easy task.

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