Leslie Berestein Rojas Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter

Leslie Berestein-Rojas
Contact Leslie Berestein Rojas

Leslie Berestein Rojas is KPCC's Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter.

An award-winning journalist with several years’ experience reporting on immigration issues, Berestein Rojas most recently covered immigration on the U.S.-Mexico border for the San Diego Union-Tribune. She has retraced the steps of migrants along desert smuggling trails, investigated immigrant detention contractors, and told the stories of families left behind in Mexico’s migrant-sending towns.

A native of Cuba raised in Los Angeles, Leslie has also written for Time, People, the Orange County Register and the Los Angeles Times. She has reported from Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.


Stories by Leslie Berestein Rojas

In the news this morning: Visa lottery lawsuit, a red-blue divide on immigration, minority education, Baptists for immigration reform, more

California lawyer sues State Dept. over revoked green card lottery - CNN A Los Angeles immigration lawyer has filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of several people who were notified they had won a federal green card lottery, but whose hopes were dashed after the agency tossed out the results.

Report: The world's poorest countries host the most refugees

Today is World Refugee Day, and to mark it, the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has released a report detailing where people displaced from their native countries by war, famine, political upheaval and other crises have sought shelter.

Dropping the 'Americanized' nickname

I've been catching up on my reading after a few busy days in Florida spent at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention, and among the great items I've sifted through is an interesting post on WAMU’s DCentric blog about ‘Americanized’ nicknames.

In the news this morning: Secure Communities reform plans, fewer workers as GA law looms, McCain blames fires on border crossers, more

ICE announces Secure Communities reforms - Florida Independent Planned changes announced to the immigration enforcement program include refining it to focus to serious criminals, better training of local law enforcement, and addressing potential civil rights concerns.

'The New American Reality' (Video)

One of the visual highlights today at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention in Orlando, Florida was a video produced by Univision, shown during a lunchtime panel on Spanish-language media and intended to drive home its importance as a way of reaching the vast and growing Latino market.

On Los Angeles as an 'Arrival City'

En route to the National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention from LAX to Orlando yesterday, I had a chance to read part of "Arrival City," a book by British journalist Doug Saunders that tells the story of worldwide migration through an exploration of the cities that have been transformed by it.

In the news this morning: Spanish language U.S. coverage expands, Rep. King's hearing on Islam and prisons, Texas 'sanctuary' bill, more

Spanish TV news expands as 2012 election nears - Associated Press Spanish-language television news has greatly expanded its domestic coverage this year, just in time for the 2012 election season.

Greetings from the Sunshine State

I’ve just arrived in Orlando, Florida, where I’ll be spending the next couple of days participating in this year’s National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention. I'll be speaking on two panels related to immigration, so if any Multi-American readers are in town, stop by and say hello.

New federal E-Verify bill seeks crackdown on unauthorized hiring

Proposed legislation called the Legal Workforce Act of 2011 was introduced today in the House of Representatives by Rep. Lamar Smith, a Republican from Texas. The bill seeks to make mandatory and expand the now-voluntary program known as E-Verify, an online system that allows employers to check employees' legal authorization to work.

Getting Spammed: The love keeps on coming for Spam musubi

When I featured Hawaii's Spam musubi last month on a list of unsung ethnic delicacies, I never imagined the reaction it would provoke among readers and the general public.

In the news today: Immigration is top issue for Latinos, another round of Muslim hearings, replacing farm workers with convicts, more

Immigration Replaces Economy as Top Latino Issue - Wall Street Journal Latino voters in a national poll placed immigration as a top policy issue, above the economy and jobs.

The cultural mashup dictionary: Tweecanos

I've never met @xicano007, but a tweet from this East L.A. blogger and sports card collector brings us yet another entry for our evolving dictionary of cultural mashup terms: tweecanas and tweecanos.

Obama and immigration: More details from a poll of Latino voters

The results of a nationwide poll of Latino voters released last week found immigration to be a personal issue for many. Among other things, out of a sample of 500 registered voters in 21 states, 53 percent said they knew someone who is undocumented, and one-fourth said they knew a person or family who has faced immigrant detention or deportation.

In the news this morning: Latinos and redistricting, convicted BART officer released, a difficult decade for American Muslims, more

California redistricting: Latinos fret over redrawn map of California congressional districts - Los Angeles Times The executive director of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials calls the proposed new maps of congressional districts the "worst-case scenario for Latinos in California.

Zebra print? Masks? The quinceañera has come a long way

Last Sunday I attended a quinceañera expo in Garden Grove for KPCC's Madeleine Brand Show, interviewing a few of the dozens of vendors who were there catering to parents of teenage girls preparing for the ultimate Latin American coming-of-age ritual.