Liz Jones


Year started with KUOW: 2006

Liz reports on immigration and emerging communities for KUOW. Her work covers issues within our region’s growing immigrant and refugee populations, as well as stories connected to minority groups with a longer history in the area.

She comes to KUOW after several years at an online news startup, which was later bought by Oxygen Media in New York.  Her last position there was health editor for the network’s website.

Liz has also lived in Spain and Peru and speaks Spanish. She is a graduate of the University of Washington, with a degree in communications.

Liz’s work for KUOW has taken her to Mexico and India. Both those reporting trips produced award-winning documentaries. In 2009, Liz received a regional Murrow award for a documentary about indigenous Mexicans who migrate to the Seattle area. In 2014, she won a national Gracie award and RTNDA’s Kaleidoscope Award for a series that focused on immigration-related links between India and the Puget Sound region.

Her work has also been heard on national shows including NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Here & Now, The World, Only A Game, Marketplace, The Takeaway and BBC News Service.  

Ways to Connect

The Alhamdan family -- two parents and six children -- arrived recently in Seattle from Syria. They are joining a tiny community of 25 recent Syrian refugees.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

The debate about Syrian refugees continues to gain force. And more Northwest politicians are taking sides, as KUOW’s Liz Jones reports.

Liz Jones/KUOW

Washington state will continue to welcome Syrian refugees. That’s the word from Governor Jay Inslee. At least 19 other U.S. governors have called to block refugees from Syria in response to the Paris attacks.

The first Syrian refugees have arrived in Seattle since President Obama announced the U.S. would take at least 10,000 Syrian refugees next year.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

American Airlines flight number 1239 touched down at Sea-Tac Airport, and a family of Syrian refugees walked down the jet way and into a new life.

They’re one of the first families to arrive in the Seattle area since the U.S. agreed to take in more Syrian refugees. The civil war in Syria has displaced more than 4 million people.  

José Luis Avila, of Renton, is fighting for the release of his wife Nestora Salgado from Mexico.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

Human rights activist Nestora Salgado raised her family in Renton. She’s a U.S. citizen and a human rights activist.

But most people know her now as a political prisoner. She’s been held in a Mexican prison for more than two years, with limited outside contact.

City Councilmember Kshama Sawant speaks at her election night party at Melrose Market in Seattle on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

As election results flashed on the screen Tuesday night, a party of Kshama Sawant supporters erupted.

It showed the Seattle City Council incumbent leading challenger Pamela Banks by 5 percentage points.

People with limited English ability tend to live near pollution-causing freeways and industrial areas. And Latinos outnumber any other group.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Neighborhoods where non-English speaking Latinos live tend to have the most toxic air quality, according to new research out of Washington State University.

Workers who harvest clams at a Bellingham-based company say their employer underpaid them for years. They have filed a lawsuit for wage theft.

In this Sept. 10, 2014 file photo, detained immigrant children line up in the cafeteria at the Karnes County Residential Center in Texas. About 70 children from the border have been placed with foster families in Washington state.
AP Photo/Eric Gay

Expansion plans are underway for an immigration program linked to Microsoft, but it's something that has nothing to do with computers or technology.

It’s a non-profit called KIND, or Kids In Need of Defense, and it provides free attorneys to immigrant children who face deportation.

Two workers injured in the explosion at a hydroelectric dam in central Washington remain in critical condition Friday afternoon with burns covering more than 20 percent of their bodies.

A barefoot boy stands on a cement wall after his family's arrival on a dinghy from the Turkish coasts to the northeastern Greek island of Lesbos. About half a million refugees have crossed the Mediterranean this year, although few will end up in Seattle.
AP Photo/Santi Palacios

Here's the short answer to how many more Syrians are expected to resettle in Washington state: Not many. At least not in the next couple years.

“Definitely not 3,000 Syrians coming to Seattle," says Bob Johnson. Johnson heads the Seattle office of the International Rescue Committee. It's one of the largest resettlement agencies in the country. 

People who struggle with English will have an easier time getting help if they’re injured on the job in Washington state.

That’s because of a federal agreement to settle a complaint targeting Washington’s system for workers’ compensation.

Machinery spraying pesticide on rows of Christmas trees at tree farm near Wautoma, Wis., in 2011.
Flickr photo/Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Stronger rules for pesticides sprayed on farms and in forests, greenhouses and nurseries can cut health risks for workers, the federal government said in rolling out new safety standards this week. 

That news doesn’t come too soon for farmworkers like Martin Rios.

A woman is taken to an ambulance on the Aurora Bridge after the crash Thursday.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

They came to Seattle from around the world: Austria, China, Indonesia and Japan. 

They died on the Aurora Bridge on Thursday.

They were mourned at North Seattle College on Friday, where some students said they were frightened by the collision between a large tourist vehicle known as “the Duck” and a bus.

An injured person is taken from the scene of the Aurora Bridge bus crash on Thursday.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

UPDATE, 3;10 p.m.: A duck amphibious tour vehicle swerved into a charter bus carrying international students on the Aurora Bridge Thursday. At least four people died and dozens were injured, emergency officials said.

At least 44 people were taken to hospitals.

China President Xi Jinping.
Flickr Photo/Global Panorama (Michel Temer) (CC BY SA 2.0)/

The Chinese President Xi Jinping will be in Seattle Tuesday. It’s the first stop on his U.S. itinerary. KUOW’s Liz Jones visited Seattle’s Chinatown neighborhood to see what they think of this high-profile visitor.