Migratory Notes 72
Asylum system overhaul, the other family separation, cost of smuggling
Happy Independence Day! In honor of the 4th, we are publishing an early newsletter, and just highlighting a few stories from the week. We will be back next week with the full newsletter.
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A sweeping overhaul of asylum under consideration by the Department of Justice would make anyone prosecuted with illegal entry ineligible for asylum, reports Dara Lind for Vox. And it would codify AG Jeff Sessions’ efforts to restrict asylum access for victims of domestic and gang violence.
A copy of the draft legislation obtained by Vox reveals changes that would lock some of the most vulnerable asylum seekers out of protection in the U.S, in particular from Central America. “In effect, under this new regulation, combined with the zero-tolerance prosecution initiative, no one would be able to come to the US and get asylum unless they presented themselves at a port of entry,” writes Lind. “Many asylum-seekers simply don’t have that option.”
Two siblings are left to fend for themselves amidst a rotating cast of relatives after their mother’s deportation in a workplace raid. Their father was deported years ago. The experience is an example of the other type of family separation, this one happening inside the country, as the Trump administration ramps up workplace raids and enforcement, reports The Washington Post.
The ACLU has has taken on 170 “Trump-related legal actions,” reports The New York Times in an in-depth profile of the organization and its leadership. One of those has been the case against family separation.
Some detained immigrants prosecuted under zero tolerance have been able to establish basic communication with their children. But detention centers full of separated migrant parents remain a hive of anxiety, as parents receive little or no information about when or how they may be reunited with their children, reports The Marshall Project.
The Rising Price Tag to be Smuggled
What is the cost of migration? A decade ago it was $1,000 to $3,000 to be transported across the border from Central America. Today it’s often more than $10,000. The New York Times reports on the granular details of what $12,000 can buy you on the journey north: the drivers who conceal migrants in trailers and buses, the safe houses, and the bribes that pass into the hands of Mexican police officers.
‘Great Immigrants, Great Americans’
Every 4th of July since 2006, the Carnegie Corporation releases a list of 38 immigrants — now naturalized citizens — who deserve tribute. This year, the honorees include musician Regina Spektor; actor Kumail Nanjiani; and Art Acevedo, Houston’s chief of police.
The Paul & Daisy Soros Foundation announced the recipients of its 30 scholarships for immigrants and their children who are pursuing graduate school in the United States.
Jobs, Fellowships & Awards
- ProBar Immigrant Children’s Assistance Project is hiring various positions: an unaccompanied children legal service specialist, legal assistant, legal director, and staff attorney.
- Immigrant Justice Corps is hiring for several attorneys and a social worker.
- Define American is hiring a development manager for fundraising and strategic growth.
- The League of Kitchens is hiring a fellow for recipe writing and testingas part of a program where immigrants teach cooking classes.
- FWD.us is hiring for several positions, including press and campaign manager positions
- WBEZ is hiring a radio reporter to cover race, class and communities
- ProPublica is offering student scholarships to a host of conferences, including NAHJ, NABJ, AAJA, and others
Immigration Resources & Opportunities
Recently released immigration books (got one, send it over)
- Deportation in the Americas edited by Kenyon Zimmer and Cristina Salinas explores deportation policy and its global impact
- We Built the Wall: How the US Keeps Out Asylum Seekers from Mexico, Central America and Beyond by Eileen Truax
- Vanishing Frontiers: the Forces Driving Mexico and the United States Together by Andrew Selee explores the two countries intertwined histories.
- Homelands: Four Friends, Two Countries, and the Fate of the Great Mexican-American Migration by Dallas Morning News border correspondent Alfredo Corchado
- From Here and There: Diaspora Policies, Integration, and Social Rights Beyond Borders, by Alexandra Délano Alonso, is the first book-length guide about consular services.
- Undocumented Lives: The Untold Story of Mexican Migration, about the Mexican government’s support for migration. PRI profiled the book’s author.
- The Making of a Dream: How a group of young undocumented immigrants helped change what it means to be American by Laura Wides-Muñoz covers the growth of the Dreamer movement.
Podcasts & Immigration News
- Radio Public curates a list of podcasts about immigration and migration
- A is for America America’s Voice discusses immigrant politics and organizing.
- Only in America: National Immigration Forum’s podcast about the people behind immigration issues.
- The New American Songbook from Groundtruth Project looks at the stories behind the songs of immigrants.
- ¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? is a bilingual podcast to help connect a Midwestern Latinx community.
- Moving Stories is an app and curriculum to capture and share immigrant stories.
- Re-imagining immigration has resources and lessons to teach about migration, immigration, refugees, and civic empowerment through history, literature, and the sciences
- The Advocates for Human Rights and the Immigration History Research Center at UMN free curriculum that helps students learn about U.S. immigration through personal narratives: Teaching Immigration with the Immigrant Stories Project
- Imm-print publishes an Immigration Detention Syllabus.
Reporting resources, tools and tips
- Documented covers New York City’s immigrants and the policies that affect their lives
- Migration Reporting Resources (Global Investigative Journalism Network)
- Resources for Investigating Visas (Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting)
- Reporting on Refugees, Asylum Seekers and Immigrants (90 Days, 90 Voices)
- Immigration Data Resources: An extensive, and growing, list of immigration resources curated by PRI’s Angilee Shah and shared as part of her presentation on finding immigration stories at NICAR 2018.
- Tips on covering immigration when you do not live near the border(Daniel Connolly, from IRE 2017)
That’s all for Migratory Notes 72. If there’s a story you think we should consider, please send us an email.
*Daniela Gerson is an assistant professor at California State University, Northridge with a focus on community, ethnic, and participatory media. She is also a senior fellow at the Democracy Fund. Before that she was a community engagement editor at the LA Times; founding editor of a trilingual hyperlocal publication, Alhambra Source; staff immigration reporter for the New York Sun; and a contributor to outlets including WNYC: New York Public Radio, The World, Der Spiegel, Financial Times, CNN, and The New York Times. She recently wrote How can collaborations between ethnic and mainstream outlets serve communities in the digital age? for American Press Institute. You can find her on Twitter @dhgerson
*Elizabeth Aguilera is a multimedia reporter for CALmatters covering health and social services, including immigration. Previously she reported on community health, for Southern California Public Radio. She’s also reported on immigration for the San Diego Union-Tribune, where she won a Best of the West award for her work on sex trafficking between the U.S. and Mexico; and before that she covered a variety of beats and issues for the Denver Post including urban affairs and immigration. Her latest story is What ice cream flavors can teach us about the changing California Dream. You can find her on Twitter @1eaguilera
*Yana Kunichoff is an independent journalist and documentary producer who covers immigration, policing, education and social movements. She was project manager for Migrahack 2016 in Chicago. She has also producedfeature-length documentaries and a pop-culture web series for Scrappers Film Group; worked as a fellow with City Bureau, where she won a March 2016 Sidney Hillman award for an investigation into fatal police shootings; and covered race and poverty issues for the Chicago Reporter. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, The Atlantic, Pacific Standard and Chicago magazine among others. You can find her on Twitter @yanazure