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Victor Pizarro, who runs a cab company in Plattsburgh, N.Y., started noticing something unusual in January, around the time of President Trump's inauguration.

People who didn't speak English were getting off at the bus station in the city, located about 20 miles from the Canadian border, and handing his drivers a piece of paper that read, "Take me to Roxham Road. How much?"

Pizarro had never heard of Roxham Road. It's a narrow street that dead-ends in a ditch marking the border between the U.S. and Canada.

KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Bill Radke speaks with Ramilya Salem and Yunus Alhobane, two students at Edmonds Community College. Three years ago, they came to America for a 10-month high school exchange program through the state department.

Then, a civil war broke out in their home country of Yemen. It was too dangerous for them to go home, so the State Department extended their stay.

The American Civil Liberties Union announced on Wednesday that its affiliates had filed 13 coordinated Freedom of Information Act lawsuits, demanding government documents related to implementation of the president's executive orders on travel and immigration.

South Lake Union neighborhood, home to many Seattle tech companies
Flickr Photo/Ted Eytan (CC BY-SA-2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/agMkfy

Kim Malcolm talks with Axios tech editor Kim Hart about recent rule changes to the H-1B visa program, and what they could mean for tech workers in the Puget Sound region.

A file picture from Oct. 17, 2008, shows the 'B' cell and bunk unit of the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Wash.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Immigrants at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma are continuing a hunger strike, according to immigrant advocacy group Latino Advocacy.

Latino Advocacy director Maru Mora Villalpando said up to 200 people were participating in the hunger strike Monday.

President Trump's updated executive order, the one restricting travel from six Muslim-majority countries, is blocked for now.

But administrators at Northeastern University in Boston aren't taking any chances.

"We're in a state of limbo," says Mike Armini, who oversees government relations. "We don't quite know what's going to happen next, so we've advised them to stay here," he says, talking about the 250 Northeastern students from those six countries.

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Liz Jones talks with Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson about the role of local governments in federal immigration enforcement. The Attorney General's office produced a document that lays out best practices and policies for police departments, schools, hospitals, and other public agencies.

Read the full document online here.

Poet Hamda Yusuf says Somali poetry 'is the poetry that you have to hear. And you have to hear it from the person who wrote it.'
Courtesy of Hamda Yusuf

When Hamda Yusuf was growing up in West Seattle, her mom used to recite original poems for her children in the car.

"I remember my dad telling me Somalia is the nation of poets and I always knew this to be true... because I know nobody else's mom is writing them poems," Yusuf said. 

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) vehicle in downtown Seattle
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Washington state’s highest-ranking judge is still waiting for federal immigration officials to write her back.

Washington State Supreme Court Chief Justice Mary Fairhurst requested that courthouses be off limits for immigration arrests. But that option will likely stay on the table for now.

KUOW PHOTO/BOND HUBERMAN

Seattle sues President Trump over sanctuary cities and says goodbye to bike share, Sound Transit's CEO talks car tabs and KOMO's news staff takes on their employer over fake news.

KUOW PHOTO/MEGHAN WALKER

Seattle officials are taking their support for immigrants and refugees a step further: They want to create a $1 million legal defense fund to help people facing deportation.

Seattle would join other cities that have created similar programs, including Los Angeles and New York, in reaction to stricter federal immigration enforcement.


La Vida Boheme plays upbeat music on somber themes. The Venezuelan rockers' last album, Será, came as student protests were erupting in their home town of Caracas. The band's booking agent was murdered; their tour manager was kidnapped. The four members of the group locked themselves inside their apartments. They would later describe the record, which won a Latin Grammy, as "the soundtrack to an apocalypse."

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announces a lawsuit against the Trump administration on March 29, 2017.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Seattle will not be bullied into helping with federal immigration enforcement, Mayor Murray said on Wednesday. The city is taking the Trump administration to court over what it calls “an unconstitutional order.”


Groups that help low-income families get food assistance are alarmed by a recent drop in the number of immigrants seeking help. Some families are even canceling their food stamps and other government benefits, for fear that receiving them will affect their immigration status or lead to deportation. Many of the concerns appear to be unfounded but have been fueled by the Trump administration's tough stance on immigration.

People who don’t have permanent immigration status and who’ve been victims of crime may qualify for a special visa.

Problem is, they’re often reluctant to come forward and report the abuse. Even if they do, law enforcement lacks guidelines for helping them.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

A federal showdown with sanctuary cities continues to heat up. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued new warnings to jurisdictions seen as “uncooperative” on immigration enforcement, while officials in Washington state vow they won’t back down.

Officials in New York, California and elsewhere say they'll fight Attorney General Jeff Sessions' move to cut off billions in federal grant money to cities that don't share the Trump administration's strict approach to enforcing immigration laws.

"The Trump Administration is pushing an unrealistic and mean spirited executive order," New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted Monday night. "If they want a fight, we'll see them in court."

The Justice Department is following through on an executive order to withhold as much as $4.1 billion in federal grants from so-called "sanctuary cities," generally defined as places where local law enforcement limit their cooperation with federal authorities on immigration enforcement.

Editor's Note: This story has been edited throughout. An earlier version was inadvertently published.

Hossein Mahrammi, who helped U.S. development authorities in Kabul rebuild his war-torn country, expected a warm welcome when he arrived in the United States this month.

The economist had planned to stay in Afghanistan but left because he feared for himself and his family. One by one, he saw that his colleagues were assaulted or killed because they worked with Americans.

In Washington state, experts say probably more than half of the workers harvesting the apples you eat and the asparagus you grill are undocumented. And farmers and undocumented workers are bracing for deportations President Donald Trump has promised.

A Catholic bishop is preaching a message that’s tough for some of his white parishioners to hear: that they have to love their undocumented immigrant neighbors.

Father Antonio Illas was federal immigration agent for 25 years before becoming a priest.
KUOW Photo/Andy Hurst

Father Antonio Illas was a federal immigration agent for 25 years before he turned his life to God.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

About a dozen counties in Washington state are singled out in a new report from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE.  It’s the first of an ongoing weekly report that spotlights local jails considered “uncooperative” on federal immigration enforcement.

Eat With Muslims co-founders Fathia Absie and Ilays Aden
KUOW Photo/Andy Hurst

Fathia Absie wants you to come to dinner. The Somali-American filmmaker and writer is co-founder of a Seattle-based project called Eat With Muslims, where Muslim families host dinners for people of all faiths and cultures.

On March 4, about 25 people gathered in the community space of a Belltown apartment building. The dinner was hosted by Absie and co-founder Ilays Aden. The mood was light and fun — like a dinner party.

Guests gathered to talk, but it wasn't a question-and-answer style event. Instead they answered questions as a group, like, "What's the most beautiful thing in the world?" and "What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Muslims?" 

Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin speak at a press conference outside the federal courthouse, Wednesday, March 15, 2107, in Honolulu.
AP Photo/Marco Garcia

A federal judge in Hawaii stopped President Trump’s newest executive order on Wednesday afternoon, just hours before it was supposed to take effect. The order would have temporarily halted the refugee program and frozen the visas to nationals from six Muslim majority countries.

The judge, Derrick K. Watson, halted the order nationwide. 

Meantime, a federal hearing in Seattle on Wednesday could also potentially block President Trump’s revised travel ban from taking effect this week.

A federal court in Maryland also heard arguments for putting the new executive order on hold.


Updated at 3:30 a.m. ET Thursday

Hours after a federal judge in Hawaii issued a nationwide temporary restraining order against President Trump's travel ban, U.S. District Court Judge Theodore D. Chuang, in Maryland, issued a nationwide preliminary injunction prohibiting the enforcement of the 90-day ban against travelers from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Chuang's order denies the plaintiffs' request to block other parts of Trump's March 6 executive order, including the temporary ban on refugees.

Moon Bang, originally from Korea, owns the Black Diamond Bakery. She has periodically encountered racism since she bought the bakery 10 years ago.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Our region was built with immigrant labor. It’s part of the story of growth and development here. There are many ways to tell that history. How we tell it signals who belongs, and who is a foreigner.


Six times in recent days, Marco Antonio Cabachuela, his wife, Irma, and their 3-year-old, Valerie, walked up to federal immigration officers at the Hidalgo, Texas, port of entry and asked for asylum.

And every night, they returned to an immigrant shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, where men and women sit listlessly in a shady courtyard.

"They rejected it," he says. "They said there was no room for us."

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

On election night in Seattle, James and Felice decided to get married.

Not because she was pregnant, Felice teased. They were in love — and Felice's legal status in the U.S. was tenuous.

Listen to their story:


Flickr Photo/Alex Proimos (CC BY-NC-2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/bt29wL

Kim Malcolm talks with Kaiser Health News reporter Julie Rovner about how immigrants and refugees may be affected by the American Health Care Act, the House Republicans' replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act.

Kaiser Health News is a national health policy news service. It is an editorially independent program of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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