Immigration Reform

As Congress moves forward with immigration reform, we take a look at how this issue connects to culture, business and families in the Northwest.

Our region is home to a unique blend of immigrants who work in all parts of our economy — from high-tech to agriculture. This population already has a deeply-rooted history here. And its ranks are expanding rapidly.

Proposals for comprehensive immigration reform address border security, employment verification, guest-worker programs and pathway to citizenship for an estimated 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the US.

Pages

DACA
3:46 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Mexico Pays To Help Its Citizens Avoid Deportation From The U.S.

Mexican consulates, like this one in Houston, are helping some unauthorized immigrants from Mexico pay application fees for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
WhisperToMe Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 5:08 pm

Mexico is helping some of its citizens apply for a controversial immigration program in the U.S. called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA.

Since the Obama administration created the program in 2012, more than 580,000 unauthorized immigrants brought to the U.S. as minors have received temporary relief from deportation and been given work permits that last for at least two years.

Read more
Immigration
7:59 am
Wed September 10, 2014

Hunger Strike Leaders Have Day In Court

Veronica Noriega, left, expressed her disappointment Tuesday that her husband Ramon Mendoza would not be released. She stood with his attorney, Sandy Restrepo.
Credit KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Some leaders of a recent hunger strike at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma had their day in immigration court this week.

Read more
Illegal Immigration
4:01 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Why Washington Jails Aren't Detaining Undocumented Immigrants

Marcie Sillman talks with Jorge Baron, executive director of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, about why Washington counties are not detaining immigrants per the request of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Read more
Immigration Court
4:51 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Facing Deportation: Are Kids Entitled To An Attorney?

This week in Seattle, a 10-year-old boy is scheduled to appear in immigration court along with his teenage brother and sister. The siblings fled to the United States to escape violence after gang members in El Salvador killed their father. Now they all face deportation, but no lawyer will represent them in court.

Read more
Detainee Treatment
9:19 am
Mon September 1, 2014

How Prison Corporations Affect Immigration Detention

File photo of the interior of Northwest Detention Center.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Ross Reynolds talks with Alissa Ackerman, assistant professor of criminal justice at the University of Washington, Tacoma, about how private corporations that run prisons have been lobbying to increase the criminalization of immigration and what that means for the treatment of detainees.

RadioActive Youth Media
11:50 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Water Is the Sound Of Freedom For My ‘Ba’

Quang Adam Nguyen, Angela's dad, holding the South Vietnamese and American flags.
Credit Courtesy of Quang Adam Nguyen

I’m at a dock on Lake Washington and it’s a calm evening. I’m with my "ba" – dad in Vietnamese – Quang Adam Nguyen.

Ba is handy and loving. According to my mom, he’s “a little chubbier” than the “handsome, buff” man she married 25 years ago. My brother Andy calls him a “fixer,” and my sister Kristy says he’s “stubborn.”

He's always thinking and forgetting, about too much, if you ask me. He remodeled the house I’ve lived in my whole life but still hasn’t finished the gazebo. He did finish a waterfall in the yard, however. 

Read more
Immigration
11:10 am
Tue August 26, 2014

Challenges Facing Vietnamese Refugees In Seattle

Ross Reynolds speaks with Sarah Tran, director of development at the Vietnamese Friendship Association, about the organization's programs to tutor immigrant parents and students in the skills they need to get through high school. 

Crisis In Somalia
3:30 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Somali-Americans Worry About How They Will Support Their Families Abroad

Ross Reynolds talks with Degan Ali, executive director of the African charity and development agency, Adeso, about the difficulties Somali-Americans face when sending money to their homelands.

Somalia doesn't have any banks, so transfers are more informal. American banks are increasingly refusing to facilitate the transfers for fear that money will go to the terrorist group, al-Shabaab. But 40 percent of the Somali economy relies on money transfers, which supports people suffering from famine and the fallout of war.

Unaccompanied Minors
3:52 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

JBLM No Longer Under Consideration As A Place For Undocumented Immigrants

Washington Congressman Denny Heck said the Department of Health and Human Services is no longer seeking facilities for temporary shelters for refugee children at Washington’s Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Heck, who represents the 10th Congressional District which includes JBLM, said he trusts the department to make the right decisions about what facilities are best for the refugee children, but adds that he will continue to push for what he calls common sense, comprehensive immigration reform.

Read more
Immigration
7:41 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Oregon 'Driver Card' Campaign Kicks Off

Originally published on Mon August 4, 2014 5:51 pm

Oregonians will vote this fall on whether its residents should be able to apply for driver’s licenses regardless of their immigration status. Supporters of the measure kicked off their campaign Monday.

Read more
NPR Story
2:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Expedited Hearings For Migrant Children Raise Concerns

Originally published on Fri August 1, 2014 4:14 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Around the Nation
3:03 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Three Years On, Utah's Immigrant Guest Worker Law Still Stalled

This statue is located in Utah's Capitol building, beneath a mural of Brigham Young and the first Mormon pioneers traveling out west. "Utah is a place that understands the value of immigration," says Utah's speaker of the House, Becky Lockhart.
Kirk Siegler NPR

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 5:28 pm

At the Utah State Capitol, a mural of Brigham Young and the first Mormon pioneers brings some color to the building's spartan rotunda. Beneath it is a more modern sculpture — a woman walking forward with her son, who's holding a globe.

Underneath the statue are the words "Immigration and Settlement." The symbolism isn't lost on state House Speaker Becky Lockhart.

"Utah is a place that understands the value of immigration, the value of peoples coming to find a better life," she says, pointing up at the sculpture.

Read more
Immigration
7:56 am
Thu July 31, 2014

Northwest Farmers Worried About Visa Backup For Legal Migrant Workers

File photo of workers at a berry farm outside of Eltopia, Washington.

Originally published on Wed July 30, 2014 7:03 pm

A breakdown in a U.S. State Department computer system that processes foreign worker visas has sowed major worries at some Northwest orchards.

Read more
Immigration
7:46 am
Mon July 28, 2014

One Woman, 817 Children: Caring For Kids Of Undocumented Parents

Nora Sandigo sits with Ronald Soza and his sister Cecia in 2009, while the children were on a hunger strike to protest the deportation of their mother. Sandigo is the legal guardian of the Soza children (now 15 and 18) — and 815 other American children of undocumented immigrants.
Lynne Sladky AP

Originally published on Sun July 27, 2014 8:26 am

The recent increase in the number of unaccompanied, undocumented minors immigrating across the border has left tens of thousands of children waiting in limbo. But thousands of children who are already American citizens also face an uncertain future — because their parents are not in the country legally.

If their parents get deported, those minors could end up in foster care, or adopted by strangers.

Read more
Wiring Funds
8:01 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Seattle Somalis Worry Arrests Could Hinder How They Send Home Money

Somali Americans rally at the Minnesota State Capitol to protest the closure of money service businesses Friday, Jan. 6, 2012.
AP Photo/Jim Mone

A Somali immigrant living in Kent was arrested Wednesday on charges of fundraising for the Somali insurgent group Al-Shabaab. Her arrest could cast more suspicion on the system Somalis use to send money home.

Read more

Pages