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immigration

Fatou-Seydi Sarr
Stateside Staff / Michigan Radio

Fatou-Seydi Sarr was born in Senegal, but she now calls Detroit her home.

She brings her experiences as a black African Muslim immigrant woman to her work in social justice and human rights in metro Detroit.

Library of Congress

One of the cornerstones of President Trump's vision for America is reducing the flow of immigrants into the country. He wants to cut legal immigration by about 500,000 people a year over the next five decades – a 44% reduction. He also touts an immigration system based on merit, but just what does merit mean?

Michigan Sheriffs' Association

State legislators have modified a set of bills on driver's licenses and state IDs after complaints by immigrant rights' groups.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee removed a section of the bills Tuesday that immigrant advocates said would lead to confusion and racial profiling.

A long table surrounded by red chairs in a school classroom.
BES Photos / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Michigan schools scored poorly in the latest National Assessment of Educational progress, which tracks math and reading skills in 4th and 8th graders. Detroit schools ranked the worst for student performance.

Michigan Radio's senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry shares the results that stand out to him with Morning Edition host Doug Tribou.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Bills that would require Michigan driver's licenses and state ID cards to show certain immigration statuses are under consideration in a state House committee.

The legislation would prohibit the secretary of state from issuing license or ID cards that expire after the duration of an immigrant's legal status.

It also would codify existing procedure for noncitizens with temporary lawful status in the U.S., such as DACA recipients or foreign college students, to require their licenses or cards display that they are a "limited-term" resident.

immigration
nancybechtol / Morguefile

Michigan, a border zone

When the term “border zone” comes to mind, one might think of El Paso, San Diego, or Tucson. But according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), an agency of the Department of Homeland Security, the entire state of Michigan is a border zone.

Out of the limelight, Cindy Garcia keeps fighting for immigrant family reunification

Mar 13, 2018
Cindy Garcia
Georgi-Ann Bargamian / New Michigan Media

Cindy Garcia methodically sorts and folds #TeamGarcia fundraiser T-shirts in her Lincoln Park living room. The TV is on, the dog is barking, and her granddaughter is trying to get her attention.

It’s a typical Saturday for Garcia, wife of Jorge Garcia, who was deported to Mexico on Jan. 15. That’s the day Jorge Garcia became a Michigan flesh-and-blood symbol of the Trump Administration’s decision to make every undocumented individual in the United States subject to immediate removal.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Two Michigan members of Congress are taking a public stance in support of a Metro Detroit man facing deportation.

Ded Rranxburgaj, a native of Albania, entered the U.S. illegally in 2001. In January, he claimed sanctuary at Detroit’s Central United Methodist Church before he could be deported. The family, including two sons, has been living there ever since.

The Statue of Liberty
Celso Flores / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

When I was growing up, we were taught we should be proud to be a nation of immigrants.

Later, as a young reporter, I learned that Americans held complex and contradictory views on immigration, views that all too often could be summed up as: "Immigration was great right up until the boat that brought my ancestors over. After that, it should have been stopped." 

Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

What do we do about the "DREAMers," the hundreds of thousands of people who were brought to this country illegally as children by their guardians or parents?

The answer to this question still eludes Congress, despite two brief government shutdowns that happened in large part over legislators' inability to agree on a solution.

scales of justice
North Charleston / Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. - A Polish-born doctor who legally came to the U.S. as a child is expected to be released from a Michigan jail following his arrest by immigration agents over misdemeanor convictions 25 years ago.

 WWMT-TV reports Lukasz Niec could be released Thursday from jail in Battle Creek. Bond was set at $10,000 during a hearing Wednesday.

Courtesy of Cindy Garcia

When President Donald Trump gives his State of the Union speech tomorrow night, the wife of a man the Trump administration deported will be in the audience.

Cindy Garcia will be the guest of Congresswoman Debbie Dingell.

Rep. Dingell has been working to reunite Jorge Garcia with his family. He was deported to Mexico in mid-January.

Cindy and Jorge Garcia joined Stateside to discuss Cindy's life with her husband in the United States, and how she feels about the president’s immigration policies.

Ded and Flora Rranxburgaj's younger son, Eric, speaks on his father's behalf outside ICE offices in Detroit Wednesday.
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Supporters of a Metro Detroit man scheduled for deportation this week rallied on his behalf outside U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices in Detroit on Wednesday.

With his deportation imminent, Ded Rranxburgaj and his family sought sanctuary in a Detroit church last week.

Rranxburgaj entered the U.S. illegally in 2001 and has faced deportation orders before. The government granted him stays because his wife, Flora, is seriously ill with multiple sclerosis.

ICE agents
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Immigration officials are not saying much about the arrest last week of a Polish-born Michigan doctor who entered the U.S. legally almost 40 years ago.

Relying exclusively on a written statement, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said Dr. Lukasz Niec could be deported because of two 25-year-old misdemeanor convictions for property crimes Niec committed when he was a teen. One was for malicious destruction of property, and the other for receiving stolen property.

John Auchter / http://auchtoon.com/

On Monday this week, while our nation celebrated the life and principles of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., immigration officials were actively deporting a family man from Lincoln Park, Michigan.

Jorge Garcia came to America 30 years ago when he was a 10 year-old boy, brought by undocumented family members. He built his life here: a wife and two teenage children (all US citizens), a home, a career as a landscaper, and a law-abiding, tax-paying member of the community.

Congresswoman Debbie Dingell
Courtesy https://debbiedingell.house.gov/about/full-bio

 

U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) announced that she has invited Cindy Garcia of Lincoln Park, MI to be her guest at the 2018 State of the Union in Washington, DC. Ms. Garcia is the wife of Jorge Garcia, the 39-year-old father of two who was recently deported to Mexico this week after living in the United States for 30 years.

Congresswoman Dingell spoke directly to ICE officials at the Detroit Field Office to obtain an extension for Mr. Garcia, which allowed him to stay in the country through the holidays until January 15. 

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A Southgate family is now living above Detroit’s Central United Methodist Church.

They’ve sought sanctuary there in a last-ditch effort to save the father from a deportation order.

Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

In 2001, the U.S. government granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to more than 200,000 migrants from El Salvador after a pair of earthquakes struck their country. 

United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement

After 30 years of living in the United States, Detroiter Jorge Garcia was deported to his native country of Mexico on Monday.

Garcia, a 39-year-old landscaper from Lincoln Park, came to the U.S. with an undocumented family member when he was 10 years old. He will be leaving behind his wife and two children, all of whom are U.S. citizens.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement - or ICE - agents
U.S. Air Force / Creative Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The ACLU is trying to force the release of Iraqi detainees being held by federal immigration authorities. The civil liberties group filed a motion today with a federal judge in Detroit.

This is happening as the first round of detainees are getting their government files, which will allow them to start the process of having their cases re-opened.

Miriam Aukerman is an ACLU attorney. She says hundreds of detainees have been locked up for four or five months without a hearing.

KIT JOHNSON / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

This week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrested ten workers at a farm labor camp near Hart, Michigan. The undocumented immigrants were harvesting crops at a farm.

“The nine men have been taken to a detention facility in Youngstown, OH, which is about 480 miles from where they were picked up,” said Susan Reed, managing attorney with the Michigan Immigrant Rights Center. “The one woman we believe was taken to the Calhoun County jail.”

NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

While the politicians argue about it, the U.S. Department of Defense is trying to prepare for the effects of climate change. The Pentagon sees it as a national security issue. One of the predictions is that there will be massive migration because of extreme weather events leading to flooding or drought or other disasters.

There’s evidence of that sort of trend happening in the aftermath of hurricanes.

Dean Yang, professor of economics and public policy at the University of Michigan, co-authored an article for The Conversation titled “Hurricanes Drive Immigration to the U.S.” He joined Stateside today to explain his research.

John Auchter / Michigan Radio

The cartoon wasn't necessarily meant as an indictment of Michigan (although our embarrassing weaknesses in education and public transportation will likely prevent us from winning the Amazon HQ2 sweepstakes). It was meant as an indictment of the United States as a whole.

Now, before I end up in a stump speech for some publicity-grubbing pop star running (or not running) for Senate, let me say some nice things about America. America is great. America has vast resources. America is very wealthy. America has lots of talent.

Mercedes Mejia/Michigan Radio

Religion and politics are always a combustible mix.

During the long debate over gay marriage, many people of faith and their leaders argued that it violated their deeply held religious beliefs.

Now, more are speaking out against our nation's immigration laws and their enforcement by the Trump administration. And they're using religious convictions as the reason why. 

Today, some faith leaders gathered in Washtenaw County to make a passionate declaration of support for protecting immigrants from deportation.

JVALASIMAGES / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCLO

Last Friday, President Trump was asked about the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA). It’s the program that allows undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children to remain in the country. They're widely known as "DREAMers."

"We love the DREAMers," President Trump said. "We love everybody."

Sasha Kimel / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

President Donald Trump is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, and unless Congress passes legislation before March 2018, nearly 800,000 undocumented young people could be at risk of deportation.

The administration’s announcement Tuesday does not come as a shock. Trump often bashed the program throughout his campaign, although he seemed to soften that stance slightly once in office.

attorney and sons talking
Tyler Scott / Michigan Radio

Ann Arbor resident and Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainee Jose Luis Sanchez-Ronquillo is hoping to be released while the Board of Immigration Appeals considers whether to reopen his immigration case.

Supporters and family members of Sanchez-Ronquillo rallied outside of the ICE field office in Detroit on Tuesday as his attorney submitted a request for his release.

The Statue of Liberty
Celso Flores / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

You never know, but if President Trump’s sweeping new immigration policy proposals had always been in place, I probably wouldn’t be here. Most likely, you wouldn’t either.

My paternal ancestors supposedly came from Great Britain centuries ago, but my maternal ones came from Bavaria to Michigan in the 1880s. They didn’t speak English and had no special skills, so that would have been that.

Jose Valle-Rodriguez and his two-year-old son.
C/O Karina Valle

An Ypsilanti man won't have to sit in jail while he waits to fight deportation.

At a hearing Thursday, a judge set a $5,000 bond for Jose Valle-Rodriguez, after determining he isn't a flight risk or a threat to national security. He’s expected to be released today, after his family posts bond.

His lawyer, Brad Thomson, says Valle-Rodriguez has filed an asylum petition and will also file a marriage petition once his wife Karina becomes a naturalized citizen.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement - or ICE - agents
U.S. Air Force / Creative Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Today, more than 100 Iraqi Christians facing deportation from the United States could discover their fate.

The Iraqis were detained for visa violations – including past criminal convictions – which had been ignored for years, after they were caught up in a crackdown ordered by the current administration.

Their families say they feel betrayed by a president they'd largely supported in last year's election, and who they'd seen as a defender of Christians.

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