For the nearly one-and-a-half million migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the U.S, the solution to legalization no longer lies on a green card, but a “blue card.” A new provision in the Senate immigration reform bill could expedite the path to legalization for immigrant farmworkers seeking permanent residency. Sean Powers reports from Illinois.
Photo courtesy of Sean Powers.
Sean Powers is a reporter and digital editor at Illinois Public Media. Powers is a native of the south suburbs of Chicago, and he graduated with a journalism degree from the University of Missouri. In 2012, he completed a fellowship at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. He’s currently working on a master’s degree in the library science program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
While Congress debates provisions for a new guest worker program, elderly Mexican farmworkers called braceros protest about retirement money they say they’re owed. Mónica Ortiz Uribe reports.
Photo courtesy of Mónica Ortiz Uribe.
Mónica Ortiz Uribe is a native of El Paso, Texas, where she recently worked as a freelance reporter. Her work has aired on NPR, Public Radio International and Radio Bilingue. Most of her stories examined the effects of drug-related violence across the border in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. Previously, she worked as a reporter for the Waco Tribune Herald in Waco, Texas. She graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso with a degree in history.
The Head Start program is usually aimed at preschoolers. But this summer, the program took three college students who have spent their lives as migrant farmworkers to Washington D.C. for an internship program that aims to open up their career horizons. We speak with the students before they head back to the fields and to school.
Click here to download this week’s show. Visit the National Migrant and Seasonal Head Start Association for more information about their program. To see their intern blog, visit www.nmshsainternblog.blogspot.com.
Sammy Benavidez is a student at St. Edwards University at Austin, Texas, majoring in Social work and minoring in Psychology. In the past, he participated in the Tri-Valley Head-Start program in Grafton, North Dakota, and in TMC Head Start Program in Mercedes, Texas. He hopes to get a Masters in Social Work and also pursue a PhD.
Evangelina Alvarez is from Royal City, Washington. She is currently enrolled at Washington State University, majoring in Business Management and Operations with a minor in Spanish. She hopes to one day own her own business.
Ivon Garcia was born in Puebla, Mexico. She came to the U.S. at age three with her parents who were migrant workers. She graduated from Bridgeport High School and she is currently a Junior at Washington State University, majoring in Human Development and minoring in Women Studies and Spanish.
Cleofas “Cleo” Rodriguez, Jr. is currently the Executive Director of the National Migrant Seasonal Head Start Association in Washington, DC. His parents were migrant farmworkers in Texas and other states. He has been a strong advocate for the emotional development of young children and their families, particularly those of migrant backgrounds.