Archive for the ‘Immigration’ Category

Daisy, Ernesto, Gregorio, & Justine

These four university students were arrested last week for an act of civil disobedience: chaining themselves to the doors of the capitol. The four friends are all students at ASU: they’re studying social work, journalism, political science, and trans-border Chicana/Latina studies. They talk to Maria about reaching a point where they felt it was time to act in response to SB-1070, and how they’re looking out for one another as they manage life in Arizona.


Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

See video of the arrests last week at the capitol. (Courtesy of the Cronkite News Service at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.)

The music at the end of the segment is Amaze Me by the Brooklyn-based trio Girlyman.

Rene and Claudia

We first met Rene on the lawn of the state capitol. He was dressed in desert fatigues: harkening back, perhaps, to his years of U.S. military service during the first Gulf War.

The military was a pathway to citizenship for Rene; it has been for hundreds of thousands of immigrants over the years.

Rene and Claudia were married in 1995. Claudia is undocumented. And the couple has repeatedly tried to normalize her immigration status in the years since their marriage.

Claudia didn’t want to come to the capitol to speak with us. She was afraid to do so. For this couple and their children, fear has become a common part of their lives in Arizona.


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Arizona’s SB-1070: Signed Into Law

As we reported last week, the Arizona State legislature has approved, and now the Governor has signed, the nation’s most stringent law aimed as curbing undocumented immigrants from living and working in Arizona.

Governor Jan Brewer’s signed the measure into law Friday afternoon, saying she acted in response to “the crisis the federal government has refused to fix.” She also issued an executive order directing that police agencies receive training in what does or does not constitute reasonable suspicion that someone is in the country without documents. “People across the country are watching Arizona,” the Governor said.

Thomas Saenz is the general counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund (MALDEF). He’s convinced the law will not stand the scrutiny of higher courts.

The week in Arizona has seen numerous protests — both in favor of the measure, and those that were encouraging a veto. Here’s video from one protest in Phoenix, which ended in the arrest of demonstrators who chained themselves to the State Capitol.

(Video courtesy of the Cronkite News Service, a service of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at ASU in Phoenix. Used with permission.)

Local Enforcement of Federal Immigration Law

What role should local police agencies play in the enforcement of federal immigration law? The controversial “Section 287(g)” of the Immigration and Nationality Act allows the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to delegate federal immigration enforcement authority to state and local law enforcement agencies.

Critics of Section 287(g) say the program lacks oversight and has become an avenue for human rights abuses across the United States. Now, a report from DHS’s own Office of Inspector General agrees.

Maria talks with Clarissa Martinez who directs Immigration and National Campaigns for the National Council of La Raza about the report and its implications for ICE and for local police authorities.


Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

Read the report: The Performance of 287(g) Agreements [.pdf]

Watch an episode of NOW on PBS focusing on local enforcement of Federal Immigration Law, including Maria’s interview with Sheriff Joe Arpaio. [link will open PBS website / video requires Flash.]

NOW on PBS videolink

Thousands Rally in Washington

As the House of Representatives moved on the final passage of Health Care Reform last weekend, tens of thousands of people rallied in the bright sunlight a few hundred yards west of the Capitol. Thousands had arrived by trains and busses and cars from all across the nation—many are without documents to be in the U.S. legally—to urge President Obama to fulfill a campaign promise and to advocate that the Congress make Immigration Reform the next item on the national agenda.

Yasmeen Qureshi reports that the crowd was filled with hope.


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Watch the video from the White House that was shown at the rally on the Mall:


source: whitehouse.gov

Documenting Border Violence

In January of 2009, independent producer Scott Carrier produced a report for NPR’s Day-to-Day program (now defunct). In it, Scott followed around a Mexican photographer whose job it was to photograph gruesome drug-related murder scenes before the bodies were taken away to the local morgue. Most of the photos would appear in the next morning’s newspapers.

Here again is that broadcast.


Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

This story was part of Day to Day’s “Hearing Voices” series. CLICK HERE to link to the original broadcast dated January 5, 2009.

U.S.-Mexico Border Violence

Murders are a daily occurrence along the U.S.-Mexico border. Fueled by the drug trade, the killings no longer necessarily make the front pages of newspapers in communities such as El Paso and Ciudad Juarez. Maria talks with Latino USA contributor Monica Ortiz Uribe about the current state of affairs along the border.


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Miguel Turriza, a reporter for Noticias Cablecom, found himself in the crossfire in February in Reynosa, Mexico.

Sam’s Audio Postcard

Sam recently traveled to New York to participate in a panel about the DREAM ACT. The event was hosted by The College Board. Because of his undocumented status, Sam could not get on an airplane and had to be driven. Here’s his audio postcard of that trip.

If you’d like information about helping Sam in his quest for an education, click HERE.

America’s Secret ICE Castles

Jacqueline Stevens reports in the January 4, 2010 edition of The Nation that Immigration and Customs Enforcement, an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, is using 186 unlisted and unmarked subfield office, many in suburban office parks and commercial spaces, as detention sites. She quotes ICE official James Pendergraph as saying, “If you don’t have enough evidence to charge someone criminally but you think he’s illegal, we can make him disappear.” Maria Hinojosa talks with Stevens about her report 1 minute into the program.


Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

Latinos in 2010 & Beyond

The 2010 Census has begun and Latino population growth is widely expected to continue despite immigration losses due to the bad economy from 2008 onward. That’s because Latino population growth in the U.S. is actually fueled more by birthrates than by immigration. But judging from the amount of media coverage given to immigration issues the first decade of the milenium, many people may not know this. And a case can be made that for as many gains the Latino community has made, almost as many setbacks could also be found. Does a “wise Latina” in 2009 erase the memory of a disgraced U.S. Attorney General in 2007 in the minds of most Americans?

But there are positive things to look at as well. One would assume that population growth would eventually lead to greater representation – or at least greater recognition. The digital divide has drastically decreased. But school dropouts have not. All these things have societal impact.

To help us make sense of who we are and where we are going as a community, Latino USA’s Maria Hinojosa speaks to a panel of social, political and cultural experts to get their thoughts on the future of Latinos in the U.S.

Angelo Falcón founded the Institute for Puerto Rico Policy in New York in the early 1980s. In 2005 the organization changed its name to the National Institute for Latino Policy in an effort to better reflect the changing dynamics of Latino politics in the U.S.

Marcos Najera has contributed to Latino USA as the Latino Affairs reporter for NPR member station KJZZ based in his native Phoenix, Arizona. He has produced radio and television programming for children and worked as a theatre actor and writer.

Xeni Jardín has traveled throughout Latin America and produced the “Xeni Tech” segments for NPR’s Day to Day program but is best known as a co-editor for the interactive weblog known as boingboing.net.

Listen to their EXTENDED CONVERSATION:


Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

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