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

Who's had to wait longest for an immigrant visa this month?

It's the beginning of the month, time for the latest update from the U.S. State Department's Visa Bulletin. The bulletin lists the categories of hopeful immigrants whose turn has come to enter the United States legally with an immigrant visa.

In the news this morning: Illegal re-entry tops list of federal charges, 18 years of Arpaio's 'tent city,' green cards for entrepreneurs, mo

Illegal re-entry topped all other charges in federal courts - Boston Herald Illegal re-entry was the most frequent federal criminal charge in the United States during the first six months of fiscal 2011.

Snapshot of shifting migration from Mexico illustrates 'a new immigration reality'

The Immigration Policy Center has synthesized several recents reports into a snapshot of migration trends from Mexico, which have shifted as fewer Mexicans migrate north, but fewer of those who are already here choose to go back:Source: Immigrationpolicy

The 10th anniversary of the Dream Act

Yesterday marked the 10th anniversary of the introduction of the original Dream Act. The first Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act was introduced August 1, 2001 by Utah Republican Sen.

'Stop the plane!' How twitterati mobilized to try to stop a deportation

Last week, blow-by-blow updates on the deportation of a young man to South Africa scrolled across Twitter over the course of several hours. It wasn't the first time that young immigrant activists have used social media to intervene in a deportation, but in this case, the plane was about to depart.

In the news this morning: DOJ sues over Alabama immigration law, in-state tuition controversy, Illinois Dream Act, more

Justice Dept. challenges tough Ala immigration law - The Associated Press The Obama administration has sued Alabama over a stringent new state immigration law set to take effect Sept.

Meet the man behind the anti-Shariah law state initiatives

In case you missed it, the New York Times ran an interesting story this weekend on David Yerushalmi, the little-known Brooklyn attorney who has helped orchestrate a seemingly out-of-nowhere flurry of state initiatives to ban Islamic law from courts, including an Oklahoma measure approved overwhelmingly by voters there last year.

American snapshot: Torrance

Perhaps the world's most adorable health product mascots, the Sato Pharmaceutical Co. elephants. Born in Japan, these two live in the grocery store at the Mitsuwa Marketplace shopping center in Torrance, where I recently saw a small child pose for a photo with them.

How we observe Ramadan in an always-on society

KPCC intern Yasmin Nouh rose long before dawn today to observe the start of Ramadan. As she writes, it's not as easy to observe the Islamic holy month in the United States, with its frenetic pace of life, as it is in places like Egypt and Iran, the countries in which her parents grew up.

In the news this morning: Redistricting and minorities, Illinois Dream Act, immigrant entrepreneurs, asylum difficulties, more

Latest CA Redistricting Maps Satisfy Most Minorities, But Not Latinos - New America Media The California Citizens Redistricting Commission has approved new political boundaries, and civil rights groups are now weighing the impact the maps will have on communities of color.

What causes prejudice against foreigners, and is there an antidote?

In light of the recent mass murders in Norway perpetrated by Anders Behring Breivik, a domestic terrorist motivated by anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim bias, Scientific American has an interesting Q&A with Steven Neuberg, a professor of psychology at Arizona State University.

Hard times, but a better attitude, among those on losing end of wealth gap

A report that came out earlier this week from the Pew Research Center chronicled a dizzying drop in the household wealth of minorities between 2005 and 2009, with median Latino, Asian, and black household wealth declining by 66 percent, 54 percent and 53 percent, respectively.

In the news this morning: Killings test Norway's reputation as haven for immigrants, Latinos and the GOP, H-1B visas and U.S. workers, more

Immigration, Integration Draw Attention In Norway - NPR The brutal attacks in Norway last week by Anders Behring Breivik have tested Norway's reputation as a welcoming haven for immigrants, many of them Muslims.

The people on the losing end of the wealth gap

The effects of the recession and the housing crisis on minorities were outlined earlier this week in a report from the Pew Research Center, which found Latinos on the far losing end of a growing wealth gap between white households and households of color.

Longer immigration court wait times, with especially long waits in L.A.

The time it takes for immigration courts to decide cases continues to stretch, with average wait times getting longer by the year lately, according to a new report. And longest waits are in Los Angeles.