Liz Jones | KUOW News and Information

Liz Jones

Reporter

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, PRI's The World, Latino USA, Marketplace, The Takeaway and BBC News Service.  

Ways to Connect

Osman Mohamed of Somalia.
KUOW Photo/Mike Kane

A refugee move to Seattle.

He thought it would be paradise.

Instead, he found guns, violence and struggle. 

Tu Tu on his first shopping trip.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Bill Radke speaks with KUOW's race and culture reporter Liz Jones about her series about refugee resettlement in the Puget Sound region.  Jones tracked three refugees from the moment they arrived in this country until about eight months in, which is when their federal benefits run out and they’re on their own to make it in America.  

The goal was to show what their lives are like, the obstacles they’re up against as they race against the clock to start a life here.

Sean Conner (left) speaks about his fear of a police encounter while driving.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Anger, fatigue, frustration, resolve.

Those were some emotions that surfaced at a community gathering Thursday with Seattle police. It was a meeting of SPD’s African American Advisory Council, on the heels of a string of tragedies and tension across the country. 


Mount Calvary member Vera Brooks greets a newcomer at Sunday service.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

After a week of tragedy and racial tensions, Sunday church services gave people a place to talk about it, especially within black congregations in the Seattle area

KUOW's Liz Jones visited the morning service at Mount Calvary Christian Center in Seattle’s Central District.

An appeals court in Seattle heard arguments Thursday in a far-reaching immigration case. The central question is whether minors who face deportation should be appointed lawyers at the government's expense.


Activists and anarchists lived at 1643 King Street for at least 40 years. They called it the King Street Collective.
Courtesy of Ronni Tartlet

If this house could talk, what stories would it tell?

About the Irish-American couple that first owned it?

And the Japanese family sent to an internment camp?

Or the anarchists that played drums during the WTO protests?


Eli Tinoco, mother of two American children, would have qualified for the DAPA program, which remains blocked after a split court decision.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Immigrants and advocates around the Seattle area say their fight is far from over. The recent Supreme Court ruling is a setback, they say, and also a catalyst to focus on the presidential election. 

New Census numbers out Thursday reinforce a trend a you’ve probably noticed: The state’s population is booming. Washington ranks fifth for states that added the most new residents in the past year.

Bassam Alhamdan, father of six, meets his kids at the bus stop every afternoon.
KUOW/Liz Jones

A few months back, we introduced you to the Alhamdan family. They’re Syrian refugees. And among the first to arrive in Seattle since war broke out in their home country.


Idriss mosque near Northgate, Seattle.
Flickr Photo/J Brew (CC BY SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/3JRdMf

A man accused of making threats against a Seattle mosque was arrested Tuesday afternoon after a short standoff, police said.

Seattle police said an out-of-state friend provided information that led to a 37-year-old man. He surrendered to a SWAT team around 3:30 p.m. at his apartment in the Greenwood neighborhood.

Middle school students at the Muslim Association of Puget Sound attend a press conference concerning a recent threat following the Orlando shooting.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

A mosque in Redmond, Washington has added extra security patrols due to a recent threat.  It came just hours after the Orlando shooting.

Redmond police say they received an anonymous call Sunday night. The individual was not making the threat, but passing on information he had overheard.

A student finds a small space to work during the sit-in at Seattle University.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Some professors at Seattle University have come out in support of a student protest about curriculum. The students have called for more diverse material, and fewer books by “dead white men.” The campus sit-in is now in week three.

Homeless advocates gather outside Seattle Mayor Ed Murray's office.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Some homeless people and supporters are pushing back against plans to close the encampment under Interstate 5 known as the Jungle. They interrupted a Seattle City Council meeting this week and say they plan to keep fighting. 


Seattle Fire Department tweeted this picture of the scene of a gas leak in Ballard on Wednesday, May 18.
Seattle Fire Department

A natural gas leak in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood Wednesday forced a few people to leave their homes. Seattle firefighters handled the evacuation. 

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Presidential candidate Donald Trump warned against Syrian refugees during his recent visit to Washington state. KUOW’s Race and Culture reporter Liz Jones takes a closer look at the candidate’s claims.


Marchers at a May Day march in downtown Seattle on Sunday.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Every May 1 immigrants gather across the country to demand more rights. On Sunday, immigrants met at Judkins Park in the Central Area. 

The proposed mosque in Mukilteo.
Islamic Center of Mulkiteo

The Mukilteo businessman who sent postcards throughout his city, warning about a new mosque now says it was a bad idea. 

Some new ripples this week in a Seattle-based immigration case that’s gained national attention. 

Teacher Reid Sundbad teaches P.E. at Chinook Middle School. He also meets with a group of Latino boys three times a week for a class called Advisory.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

It’s the last day in Reid Sundblad’s P.E. class near Sea-Tac Airport, and a few kids are really bummed.

“Oh, don’t cry,” Sundblad says. “It’s been a pleasure and I love you all.”

Gustavo Gonzalez, who is from Guatemala, crossed the border illegally at age 17.
Courtesy of Northwest Immigrants Rights Project

A federal judge in Seattle will soon decide whether a local deportation case should extend to thousands of children across the country.   

The central question is whether children who face deportation should be entitled to government-appointed attorneys. 

Nestora Salgado, an activist from Renton who was imprisoned in Mexico, spoke with supporters upon arrival at Sea-Tac Airport.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Nestora Salgado — an activist and grandmother from Renton — is back home. Salgado spent more than two years in a Mexican prison on charges that have now been dropped.  A crowd gathered at Sea-Tac Airport to greet her, as KUOW’s Liz Jones reports.

A photo of Nestora Salgado from her website. The caption says it is a photo of her as the leader of the community police.
Courtesy of freenestora.org

Nestora Salgado walked out of a Mexican prison, a free woman Friday. Salgado is from Renton, a mother of three, and a U.S. citizen. But her activism against corruption led to her arrest more than two years ago. 

Police and city staff arrived in the morning of Friday, March 11, 2016 to force out the remaining 16 residents atat the former Nickelsville camp on South Dearborn Street.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Seattle police cleared out a homeless camp known as Nickelsville Friday. It’s been temporarily located on South Dearborn Street, near the freeway, since 2014.

Ronald Hawthorne was one of the first to see police arrive and alerted other campers.

“I told them look, the police are all here. There’s a lot of them and they say we only got 30 minutes to get out,” Hawthorne said.

Tiny houses being erected at Othello Village in South Seattle.
Courtesy of Low Income Housing Institute

A new homeless encampment in South Seattle is set to open Tuesday, March 8, near the Othello light rail station. It will have room for up to a hundred people, on-site counseling and a children's play area.

It’s called Othello Village and it’s in Seattle Council District 2 – Bruce Harrell’s district.

Steve Graham was No. 136 among people waiting Monday, February 22, 2016, for a chance to apply 110 low-income apartments.  'I'm keeping my fingers, toes and everything else crossed,' he said.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Steve Graham got in line late. His number was 136.

But he was optimistic about the chance of a lifetime: a shot at brand new, low-income housing in an increasingly unaffordable city.

“Number 8! Numero ocho!” came the call Monday night at El Centro de la Raza, a nonprofit in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. Only 110 units are available.

A march protesting the Seattle police shooting of Che Taylor on Feb. 21 moves through downtown Seattle on Feb. 25, 2016.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

About 100 people rallied in downtown Seattle Thursday to protest the shooting death of an African American man.

Tony Johnson of the Chinook Tribe is fluent in Chinook Wawa. He stands at Chinook Point near the mouth of the Columbia, a key spot for the fur trade 200 years ago where strangers met and needed a common language.
KUOW Photo/Dwight Caswell

Chinook Jargon was a trade language that once ruled the Northwest. But when was it used, and how many people spoke it? Listener Michelle LeSourd of Seattle asked KUOW's Local Wonder. 

Ben Nakamura, right, with his mother at an assisted living facility in West Seattle. He keeps coming out to his mother, but that information doesn't appear to register.
KUOW Photo/Mike Kane

My friend Ben Nakamura has known he was gay since 7th grade.

He came out early on, but he put off telling his parents.

Workers at Casa Latina run a morning lottery to distribute job requests for housecleaning, painting, yard work and other odd jobs.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

It’s 7 a.m., time for the morning lottery inside Casa Latina’s worker center.

One guy shakes a blue canister then pulls out plastic ID cards for the 40 or so workers here today. Most are Latino men, but not all.

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