skip to main content

Listen

Read

Watch

Schedules

Programs

Events

Give

Account

Donation Heart Ribbon

Migrant ‘Dreamers’ Seek To Enter US At San Diego Border

Evening Edition

Above: About 35 people were detained today at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry after purposely attempting to cross the border from Mexico without proper immigration documents. KPBS reporter Jill Replogle says it's the third such action in two years held to protest U.S. immigration laws and help people reunite with their families.

Aired 3/11/14 on KPBS Midday Edition.

GUESTS:

Lilia Velasquez, San Diego attorney, specializing in immigration

Liliana Luna, Organizer with National Immigration Youth Alliance NIYA

Jill Replogle, KPBS Border Reporter

Transcript

About 35 young undocumented immigrants, who grew up in the U.S., were detained Monday at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. They tried to cross the border from Mexico with the intention of being detained, so they could apply for asylum.

It was the third such action in the past two years to protest U.S. immigration laws and help people reunite with families.

Many of the men and women wore green, purple and yellow graduation caps and gowns as they marched several blocks through the streets of Tijuana, Mexico, to the Otay Mesa border crossing in San Diego, shouting "Texas," ''California," ''Arizona" and "Carolina." Mothers walked with their young children. Some wore T-shirts that read, "I Am Undocumented."

The protest, modeled on similar efforts last year when demonstrators claimed asylum at border crossings in Arizona and Texas, is one of the bolder tactics employed by advocates of looser U.S. immigration laws. More mainstream advocacy groups have focused on persuading members of Congress to support a broad overhaul backed by Obama.

Elvira Arellano, a Mexican woman who was deported in 2007 after taking refuge in a Chicago church for a year, led about 100 people in a noisy but peaceful protest on the Mexican side of the border that occupied two vehicle lanes at one of the nation's busiest crossings.

"President Obama has failed in his promise of immigration reform," Arellano told the crowd. "He has promised immigration reform, and what he's given us is 2 million deportations."

About 30 people attempted to enter the U.S., said Rocio Hernandez, an organizer with the National Immigrant Youth Alliance. The number was far lower than what organizers predicted, but Hernandez said it may rise to 150 throughout the week as organizers tried to keep authorities guessing.

United States Customs and Border Protection officers block entry lanes into the United States as the group Border Dreamers and other supporters of an open border policy march toward the United States border Monday, March 10, 2014, in Tijuana, Mexico.

"Tomorrow it may be 50, the next day it might be 100," said Hernandez, a Mexican woman who grew up in North Carolina and planned to ask permission to enter the U.S. later this week after being denied last year in the Texas protest. "It's all part of the strategy. We have to keep everyone on their toes."

People who claim asylum are interviewed by authorities to determine if their claims are credible, then either released or held in custody pending the outcome of cases. To be granted asylum, an immigration judge must find that an applicant suffered persecution or has a well-grounded fear of persecution on grounds of race, religion, nationality, membership in a social group or political opinion.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection said privacy laws prohibit the agency from saying what happened to those who tried to enter the country Monday.

The protesters call themselves "dreamers," after the Dream Act, failed legislation to allow some young immigrants to stay in the country. In 2012, the Obama administration announced regulations that allowed some young people to stay with two-year renewable permits and authorization to work.

As protesters gathered outside a Tijuana health clinic, Angelica Lopez, 22, said she planned to cross with her 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter, both U.S. citizens, and hoped to reunite with the rest of her family in Mesa, Ariz., where she graduated high school. She said she returned to Mexico voluntarily to see her ailing grandfather just before Obama announced the two-year permits.

"We hope to touch someone's heart, to touch someone's conscience," said Lopez, who wore a purple cap and gown.

Rene Apcho, 26, said he lived in Atlanta for 18 years until he was cited for driving without a license in 2009 and deported to Lima, Peru. He flew to Tijuana to join the protest and planned to claim asylum.

"I want to go home (to Atlanta) and finish what I started," he said. "All the years I went to school I don't want to go to waste."

The U.S. had 2 million deportations during the last five fiscal years, topping 400,000 in 2012 before dropping last year.

Evening Edition

KPBS' Maureen Cavanaugh, Patty Lane, Jill Replogle and Peggy Pico contributed to the Midday and Evening Edition segments.

Comments

Avatar for user 'Doozy'

Doozy | March 10, 2014 at 4 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Our immigration policy is nowhere near as strict as Mexico's. If there are Mexican dreamers, let them sleep and dream in Mexico...

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'JeanMarc'

JeanMarc | March 10, 2014 at 4:07 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Countries should be prejudiced when it comes to immigration. We should only allow wealthy people to enter, people who we know will contribute to the economy and society. What does a person with no money, from a third world country, have to offer? What will their net cost or benefit to this country be? These are the questions we should ask when deciding who can immigrate to this country.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'sdreefer21'

sdreefer21 | March 10, 2014 at 6:14 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Have any of you had to deal with an emigrating spouse?

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | March 10, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

I have. My wife came here on a fiancée visa; the process is neither quick nor cheap. Nor should it be, and it disturbs me greatly when people demand to cut to the front of the line.
Apply, wait your turn, and be worthy of accepting.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 10, 2014 at 10:33 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

DOOZY WOOZY, you are familiar with Mexico's immigration policy? Maybe you can englighten us here with a translation???

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 10, 2014 at 10:35 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

John Markkk,. mmmaybe you should famliarize yourself a bit more with your own country's admission policies? Profesionals are ALWAYS given top priority.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 10, 2014 at 10:39 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

BENZZZ, the difference is that seasonal work cannot wait for something so specific as a "fiancee visa." The market has a demand, and it is NOT in the figure of a anyone's girlfriend. The cases mentioned in the article, however, are different, it's about reuniting families. You know, those social units that many of the Republicans and conservatives with a capital C like to talk about and say that the Democrats have lost! Or at least around election time.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'sdreefer21'

sdreefer21 | March 11, 2014 at 8:23 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

I think we should be choosy on who comes here even on a temporary status. Our welfare state should carry the burden of those who bring little or nothing to the table in terms of skills or wealth. Not that you should need to be rich but you should be able to support you and your family. Secondly the forms reqiured for immigration are so difficult to read and understand. We should really make it easier and clearer to do the forms yourself. Hiring people to assist with the forms really adds up.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'JeanMarc'

JeanMarc | March 11, 2014 at 8:46 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Actaully Missionaccomplished professionals have to participate in a "lottery" system every year to get their visa renewed, while pedro gets a promise that he won't be deported. I personally know very high level attorneys and highly skilled scientists and researches that do not know if they will be allowed to work here next year. It leaves their employers in a difficult position, it leaves them in a difficult position.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | March 11, 2014 at 2:43 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

MA, Those families you seem concerned about right now can easily reunite south of our border without either waiting or violating immigration requirements.
As for what conservatives waste their time commenting on in the area of social policy... I will let them speak for themselves, since they certainly don't speak for me.

SDR21, perhaps you meant to say "should not carry the burden"? If so I agree.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'progressivebuthey'

progressivebuthey | March 11, 2014 at 2:52 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

illegals can practice law in California, and spouses, families of ANY veteran whether spending 1-2 days in the military or dishonorably discharges have citizenship. Mexicans come here for a better life but they cherry pick laws that suit them. Totally an irrational culture.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 11, 2014 at 10:30 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Hey John Markkk, "Pedro" can't be a professional???

Here's a simple fact; the USA has a 20,000 legal immigration cap for Mexico--not including immediate family members. This is completely unfair as Mexico is a neighbor. Both Canada and Mexico should have top priorities.

I'm sure the pre 1965 quota laws are more to your liking, John Markkk, where preferrential treatment was given to the Anglo Saxon of Great Britain and the German over the Eastern Europeans or Asians--never mind the Japanese who were banned even BEFORE Pearl Harbor.

PS: PLEASE DO pray tell how a foreign attorney is allowed to practice law in the USA WITHOUT a license, passing the bar exam, etc. So unless they are teaching or practicing international law, I seriously doubt your foreign lawyer story. Besides, most of the protesters merely want to rejoin their families. It is a humanitarian issue as well as an immigration one. Where all the so-called "social conservatives" now whining about how the nuclear family is under assault by the Liberals??? I thought you were one??? Oh, wait, that's right, not when it comes to ... messicans!

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 11, 2014 at 10:35 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

"MA, Those families you seem concerned about right now can easily reunite south of our border without either waiting or violating immigration requirements. "

Which would fit perfectly in your Nativist agenda! Since obviously it is the parents or parent of these young people in question, who are ALREADY here LEGALLY, why should the parents move back to Mexico??? The parents or parent are the breadwinners and here legally. Their children have a right to rejoin them. But I guess by reading your post there is a faction among the Right that cares not for families.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'DeLaRick'

DeLaRick | March 12, 2014 at 8:05 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Why are the comments about Mexico always so friggin' stale and reactionary? Saying a culture is "irrational" is lame. (Soooo grateful for the cultural insight!) All bigotry, no substance.

When you share the bottom rungs of a labor market with a neighboring country, both countries must do everything it can to facilitate cross-border traffic so that workers can traverse any socio-economic gradients. The border gates at San Ysidro and Otay are embarassing. If they were improved along with our work permit/guest worker programs, many Mexicans would live in Tijuana and commute to San Diego. I know a few Americans who would live in Tijuana if border traffic improved. As for me, I'm happy to not pay $12 for a head of lettuce.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | March 12, 2014 at 8:07 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

MA "This is completely unfair as Mexico is a neighbor. Both Canada and Mexico should have top priorities."
I'm not seeing how you reach that conclusion. I agree that there should be no preference based on race, but neither should there be one based on country of origin (provided we are in a normal/friendly diplomatic relationship). Why should an applicant from Mexico of Canada be preferred over one from Liberia or Brazil?

I have a stability agenda not a nativist one. There are plenty of home grown leeches; we don't need to import any. Additionally, if people are already free to reunite somewhere else and choose not to do so then it undermines the argument that the reunification is of primary importance to them.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'alice60'

alice60 | March 12, 2014 at 8:23 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Dear MissionUnaccomplished,

you asked; """" PLEASE DO pray tell how a foreign attorney is allowed to practice law in the USA WITHOUT a license, passing the bar exam, etc""""

The recent Supreme Court decision that allowed not ony an foriegn atty to practice law in the US, but one that has been in the country illegaly for over 20 years is very easy to find with a simple google ..........

Why is it you are so unaware and so reluctant to research before egesting inane and incorrect retorts???

It worries me that you should be allowed to vote because you seem comfortable with being unaware, yet you have strong opinions tha you treat as ifthey were facts and which were fed to you by the MSM because you are too unmotivated to to expend the time and effort to find out what is really happenening and why.

It is persons such as yourself that have no idea what living in a country with out the rights and freedoms goiven in the US and thus have no desire to fight for them or to preserve them who will be the cause of their being permanently lost.

Go live in Mexico for a couple years. That is what this country will be like in very short order, unless we close the border and enforce immigration laws. If you survive your 2 years in Mexico and have not had a change of heart then please.

Always remember, it is one thing to be vapid and unaware, it is a whole other thing to ensure you make it known with orotund inanities based on uneducated opinions and backed by the pablum fed to you by the MSM.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'alice60'

alice60 | March 12, 2014 at 8:30 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

De La Rick

You ARE paying 12 bucks for a head of lettuce, 3.50 at the Safeway and 21% of your income in taxes going to pay for the subsdizing of illegals from vehicle insurance to public schools to WICCA to rent subsidies. Probably paying around 20 for that lettuce once it's all added up.
Let the Mexicans work in Mexico. Let the families broken up by deportment meet SOUTH OF THE BORDER to reform and be a family again.

If the illegals were voting the Republican ticket, the border would have landmines by now.

Wake up dude.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'DeLaRick'

DeLaRick | March 12, 2014 at 8:34 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

alice60,

Finally! An expert. Do you think the PRI will suffer negative consequences from the Reforma Politica or Energetica? What about the PAN's Comite Ejecutivo Nacional? Do you see any promising players there? Do you think Malova is already a lame duck in Sinaloa?

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 12, 2014 at 12:10 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

For REGRESSIVEBOOTY:

PDF] ImmIgratIon Myths And The Facts - US Chamber of Commerce
www.oan.org/associations/.../USChamberImmigrationMyth-Facts.pdf‎Cached
to refute many of the most common immigration myths. There are numerous .....
41 Douglas Massey, “Five Myths about Immigration: Common. Misconceptions

Five Myths About Immigration: Common Misconceptions Underlying ...
www.operationsamahan.org/.../Five-Myths-About-Immigration-Common- Misconceptions-Underlying-US-Border-Enforcement_324.html‎CachedSimilar
Author: Massey, DS; Year: 2005; Title: Five Myths About Immigration: Common
Misconceptions Underlying U.S. Border-Enforcement; Journal: Immigration Policy

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 12, 2014 at 12:15 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

ALICE, the man you speak of went to high school and college in here in the US. What your fellow Nativist, John Markkk is speaking of, supposedly, are attorneys that he PERSONALLY knows from other countires wanting to immigrate here. At least that is what he claims in his post. Next time, maybe read more carefully.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 12, 2014 at 12:16 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Addendum Alice:

Five Myths About Immigration: Common Misconceptions Underlying ...
www.operationsamahan.org/.../Five-Myths-About-Immigration-Common- Misconceptions-Underlying-US-Border-Enforcement_324.html‎CachedSimilar
Author: Massey, DS; Year: 2005; Title: Five Myths About Immigration: Common
Misconceptions Underlying U.S. Border-Enforcement; Journal: Immigration Policy

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 12, 2014 at 12:18 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

ALICE, I wasn't aware that immigrants were being inducted into WICCA!!! LOL

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 12, 2014 at 1:07 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Benzzz, yeah, that's what they all say.It's "always" about illegal immigration and never about immigration itself! LOL Mmmaybe you should do a little more research:

The Public Spends Little to Provide Health Care for Undocumented ...
www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB9230/index1.html‎CachedSimilar
Mar 1, 2010 ... He publishes widely on issues of immigration and health. ... the largest
concentration of immigrants in the nation, RAND Corporation ... health insurance,
the type and amount of care used, and the type of immigrant they were.

Not that comes from the Rand Corp, hardly a bastion of multiculturalism or Leftism or whatever "ism" you are truly afraid of, Benzzz. (Would a leech risk life and limb to come and look for work??? Your logic, or should I say, your illogic, is truly amazing!)

IF the parent(s) are now naturalized or at least, legal residents, and live in CA, why in the world would they go "reunite" in Mexico??? Your suggestion makes no sense. The young protesters here are NOT talking about getting together for a weekend of fun, they are talking about REUNITING on a long-term basis with father, mother, sisters, brothers, who are presently living in the USA as either naturalized citiezens or legal residents.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'JeanMarc'

JeanMarc | March 12, 2014 at 4:11 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Mission you sure are fired up today!

I am not sure why people want to give immigration priority based on proximity to this country. That makes zero sense.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | March 13, 2014 at 12:41 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

MA, your Z key is stuck again, and let’s dispense with the name calling.

The young protesters are asking to be allowed to immigrate for the purpose of rejoining family members who emigrated away from them. This shows me that the priority is not on family collocation, which could be readily achieved by rejoining them in the original location. My suggestion makes plenty of sense, especially since there is nothing stopping them from reuniting there right now. Clearly it is not of primary importance to them. If the relatives want to immigrate as well, get in line with everybody else.

A leech may very well risk its life to go someplace with better sustenance if the current location is unappealing.

Also, per the site you linked, health care costs for undocumented immigrants are estimated at $6.45 Billion. (1.5% of $430B) How high would that bill have to be before you would consider it to be more than "little"?

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 13, 2014 at 1:21 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

John Markkk, it's simple economics: push-pull factors, suplly & demand. Study the history. This is nothing new. It's been going on since the 1920's. Read your history. BP was created in 1926. Not to stop Mexicans, but to stop Chinese laborers who were smuggled through the southern border because they were banned "legally" from coming to the US. We have people who live in Mexico, whether citizens or not, who are a part of the US labor force because they WORK here. We have a "free trade" agreement with Mexico and Canada--NOT with Pakistan or Zimbabwe or Romania. Why??? Economics. It's the same with--or at least should be the same with immigration. It isn't tourism; it's immigration.

Not only that but we have a geographic and historical relationship with these two, which you are forgetting.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'JeanMarc'

JeanMarc | March 13, 2014 at 3:30 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

I do not see what about proximity makes a country a better candidate for immigration. I would rather have highly educated and well-off people migrate to this country than people who come here with nothing but the shirt on their back, no education, and holding their hat out.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 13, 2014 at 9:39 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

John Markkk, you are forcing me to repeat myself. Geography and history oare part of this, but do I have to repeat myself again??? Economics. There is demand for certain work, weather it is seasonal labor, semi-skilled or skilled. They work and they make purchases. Money circulates. For you to say that it is only people with their shirt on their backs, isn't looking at the whole picture. Many undocumented have simply overstayed their visas. They did not all pay a smuggler to cross them across Pima County. Unless they are carrying a resume in their back pockets, for you to ASSume knowing their skills, is absurd and laughable.

You say you want educated immigrants, but in reality, you and your Nativist ilk are really never satisfied. You complain about unskilled clandestine border crossers from one corner of your mouth, and from the other you complain about say, Pakistani engineers being hired by Qualcomm!

Will the real bigot please stand up???

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 13, 2014 at 10:02 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

I don't know their individual stories and neither do you. You better read with a little more care next, time as their families DID NOT emigrate from them. They either crossed with their parents or crossed later. You don't know how many nor when, and neither does the article say. I would also suggest you check other sites as well, KGTV 10 and even Manjester's UT. The protesters ARE NOT only young people, as you claim, and even as I believed earlier before reading more than one source. KGTV 10 quotes a father who wants to rejoin his American-born children, for example. So no, it was not just young people among the 35 or so involved. Where are the "family values" Republicans now??? Oh, wait! These are messkins!

Does a "leech" work??? Does a "leech" risk life and limb for survival??? It betrays the very definition of the word. But then again, this wouldn't be the first time you've misused words or denied their true definition. Nor do you read very carefully. The Rand Corp article figures include ALL immigrants. Read it again before you try to pull a Gringrinchian "gotcha." The headline, I will say, should have been worded differently.

You need to read NPR's article The Truth Behind the Lies. It's about a woman that was demonized for her welfare fraud by the Right wing, while glossing over more serious crimes! It's the hypocrisy of the racists and the social darwinists. http://www.npr.org/blogs/codeswitch/2013/12/20/255819681/the-truth-behind-the-lies-of-the-original-welfare-queen

I have not called you anything other than Benzzz. It does get trite, tiresome, thus the zzz if you haven't figured it out already.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | March 14, 2014 at 10:48 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

MA, I'll address you points in reverse order.
1) If you are unable to respond politely I'd recommend you examine your own communications skills. Please not that I do not denigrate your name or attack your character. Kindly extend me the same courtesy. If the abbreviation to "MA" is in some way offensive to you I'm sorry, it was entirely unintentional. Since you are finding the additional z's tiresome go ahead and stop using them.

2) I read your link. Yes, she should have been charged with other crimes. She should also have been charged with the welfare fraud she was committing. How is this relevant?

3) Leaches do work; they position themselves where they can parasitize their prey and expend (minimal) energy extracting something of value from them. Please cite your reference for the accusation "this wouldn't be the first time you've misused words or denied their true definition".

4) I was only addressing that subgroup of protesters you had brought up. If you want to expand the conversation to immigration in general then we can do that. I should have phrase the premise better in my above post. Let me substitute instead "If family cohesion is of primary importance, it is available in the country of origin without any change in rules or waiting for approval. The fact that it is not chosen shows that the collocation is a subordinate goal."

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'JeanMarc'

JeanMarc | March 14, 2014 at 11:38 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

MIssionaccomplished you should not assume to know what I am thinking. I said that we should allow educated well off immigrants. I think it is stupid when I hear lazy Americans whining that a chinese or indian person took their job. As I have said on these very forums many times "I guess their labor is not worth as much as they thought it was"

I am a believer in the free market. If I owned a business and I needed employees, I would hire the cheapest employee that could still do the job I needed done.

If we need people to pick fruit or work in kitchens then adopt a system like singapore or japan, where migrant laborers are welcome, but labor laws are strictly enforced.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 15, 2014 at 4:47 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

IF you are a business owner and believer in free enterprise, John Markk, then justify your Nativist position when the US Chamber of Commerce is sympathtic toward the undocumented worker:

[PDF]
Immigration Myths and Facts - U.S. Chamber of Commerce
https://www.uschamber.com/.../Imm...‎
United States Chamber of Commerce
Oct 24, 2013 - 2011 pamphlet and examines new myths and facts that have emerged during the current .... Latin America experience lower unemployment

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 15, 2014 at 4:51 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

For John Markkk: Georgia’s big secret: State needs illegal workers
9:53 am June 3, 2011, by ctucker

WASHINGTON —

Well, Georgia’s agri-business leaders are posing and posturing as if it is. They dare not admit that they need the sweat and toil of migrant laborers so much that they are not always fastidious about searching for legal documents.

It’s not looking like a good year for many of Georgia’s farmers, who were already struggling with a warming earth. As drought conditions worsen in some portions of the state — upgraded from moderate to severe — searing heat and stingy rainfall are yellowing leaves and stunting crops.

Now, some of those lucky enough to reap bountiful harvests may be forced to leave fruits and vegetables in the fields for want of enough hands to pick the onions and tomatoes, beans and watermelons. Farmers have complained that some of their seasonal workers from Mexico, Guatemala and other points south have failed to show up, frightened away by the new law, which takes effect July 1, and its promise of increased scrutiny of those with Spanish surnames.

Dick Minor, president of the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable

Growers Association, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that some migrant workers are skipping Georgia because they fear harassment. “People are just saying, ‘I am not going to Georgia. The law is terrible. We are going to get in trouble there. Let’s just go on.’ They have options. And what they are saying is, ‘Georgia is not the place to go,’ “ he told reporter Jeremy Redmon.

(For what it’s worth, the labor shortage casts doubt on

the old canard that illegal immigrants are taking jobs from hardworking American citizens, a reliable set-piece in arguments from nativist diehards. Even at an average wage of $12.50 or so an hour, native-born Georgians aren’t eager to take the work the fields offer — dirty, joint-maiming, miserably hot and impermanent. Once you’ve picked one crop, you must move to another state for a different harvest.)

Still, Minor and other agri-business leaders continue to insist that they only hire legally — and that the new law has scared away workers with green cards or other legal documents. That may be. It’s certainly easy to imagine that workers who don’t wish to be harassed would avoid a state that has hung out an unwelcome sign.

But it’s also likely that some of those workers don’t have legal documents and fear deportation. Hints of that abound — including a recent history wherein Georgia farmers complained to their Congressional delegation when federal agents raided their fields.

Georgia farmers aren’t the likeliest allies of immigration reform activists, but necessity can create strange alliances.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 15, 2014 at 6:05 p.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Texas woman accused of defrauding undocumented immigrants ...

www.hancockcriminaldefense.com/.../texas-woman-accused-of-...‎
by Patrick L. Hancock
Dec 11, 2013 - Being charged with a crime can have serious implications, even if the accused is not convicted. Recently, a Texas woman is facing fraud ...

Who is the REAL exploiter, Benzzz:

Undocumented Worker Faces Deportation After Wage Complaint ...
fusion.net/.../undocumented-worker-faces-deportation-wage-complaint-1...‎
Since undocumented immigrants are working without authorization, they're ... Dont deport him just because he spoke up for not getting paid what he is entitled ...
Undocumented Worker Alleges Wage Theft, Ends Up In Deportation ...
www.huffingtonpost.com/.../undocumented-worker-...‎
The Huffington Post
Jul 9, 2013 - It's not uncommon for employers in low-wage industries to threaten undocumented workers with deportation if they make allegations of wage .

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'thompsonrichard'

thompsonrichard | March 16, 2014 at 11:59 a.m. ― 6 months, 1 week ago

Over 4,000 British passports were stolen last year in Spain alone. A convicted felon can get a U.S. passport provided that all the requirements of incarcerations are fulfilled. However, several countries do not permit convicted felons to enter their countries. At least three passengers on the missing Malaysian Airlines flight have or had stolen passports in their possession.

( | suggest removal )