Immigration in the Northwest | KUOW News and Information

Immigration in the Northwest

Immigration growth
KUOW Graphic/Kara McDermott

“We’re going to build a wall,” President Donald Trump said at his first White House press conference. Given the controversial talking point from his campaign is now a national promise, here are a few things worth knowing:

KUOW Photo/Lisa Wang

They spent the first hours of Donald Trump's presidency waiting.

First they were in the cold, snaked outside McCaw Hall. A little boy  seemed desperate to splash in a nearby water feature.  Then they waited inside—for hours—as volunteers distributed snacks, waiting themselves for instructions.

KUOW photo/Liz Jones

More than 1,200  immigrants and refugees took up Seattle’s offer for free legal help on inauguration day, according to the city's estimate. The city organized the event to help undocumented parents and others seeking citizenship, but some found they arrived too late.


Volunteers help with citizenship forms.
KUOW Photo/Lisa Wang

People started lining up in Seattle several hours before the city’s big immigration workshop opened its doors at noon Friday.

The city planned the event to coincide with Inauguration Day to emphasize that Seattle would remain a welcoming city for immigrants and refugees under the Trump administration.

People wait to attend a citizenship workshop in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Lisa Wang

On Inauguration Day, the city of Seattle hosted a free legal clinic for immigrants and refugees. Hundreds of people gathered at McCaw Hall, many seeking to become citizens. We asked attendees what's at stake for them, as Donald Trump becomes the 45th President of the United States.

KUOW photo/Liz Jones

The handover of presidential power makes us  wonder how the new administration will affect our lives.

That's especially true for young people.

  


Kim Malcolm talks with Cuc Vu about why the city of Seattle is hosting an event on Inauguration Day to provide free legal advice to immigrants and refugees. Vu directs Seattle's Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs.

An undocumented father outside the school where he works as a custodian.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

We picked the school as our meeting place.

Victor has worked as a custodian at this junior high for several years. It’s in a suburb of Seattle, near his home. He also runs a landscaping business on the side.

Victor’s also not his real name. We’re using a pseudonym because he’s undocumented.

Leading up to President Donald Trump's inauguration, KUOW reached out to a diverse group of people in the Puget Sound region to find out what this moment means to them. Here are the thoughts of Seattle resident Dujie Tahat.

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Flickr Photo/Kjetil-Ree (CC BY-NC-ND)

Kim Malcolm talks with University of Washington law professor Hugh Spitzer about how previous U.S. Supreme Court decisions could prevent the Trump administration from cutting federal funding to sanctuary cities like Seattle. 

As a new president takes office Friday, the City of Seattle will mark the occasion with a huge event for immigrants and refugees. It’s a symbolic contrast to events in Washington, D.C. And it also aims to help about a thousand immigrants with citizenship applications and other legal services.

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Since Donald Trump’s election, a sanctuary movement has popped up at college campuses across the United States. 

KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Bill Radke talks with attorney Jorge Barón about how the Trump administration could impact undocumented immigrants living in the Puget Sound region. Barón is executive director of the Northwest Immigrants Rights Project

More thoughts from Barón, and four other perspectives on how the incoming administration could impact undocumented immigrants can be found here.

This photo was taken by an undocumented immigrant featured in a KUOW story in July 2014. It was the last photo he took of America before turning around and walking into Mexico.
Courtesy Jorge Lerma

Build a wall.

Increase deportations.

End protections for young people known as "Dreamers."

KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Long before Seattle was a sanctuary city, churches here sheltered immigrants from Central America.

Carlos Mejia and his wife Ercilia moved here in 1983 from El Salvador, which was in the throes of a civil war. Patricia was seven months pregnant at the time; she later gave birth on the third floor of University Baptist Church.

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