Leslie Berestein Rojas

Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter

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

Undocumented student activists in LA get audience with federal officials, get arrested

UPDATED: Five students were arrested altogether, and released later with citations. From the story this afternoon from KPCC's Corey Moore:

'Moral turpitude' gets people deported, but what is it?

The term "moral turpitude" sounds like something related to what in the religious world is commonly referred to as sin. But it's used in the immigration courts to define a wide range of criminal offenses, some serious, others as minor as shoplifting.

In the news this morning: Work stoppage protests in Alabama, bilingual babies, migration from Central America drops, more

Ala. Hispanics Organizing Campaign Against Law - ABC News Large poultry plants are planning to close or scale back operations due to a work stoppage being promoted by Latinos in Alabama and their supporters in protest of a strict new state immigration law.

Doctors who treat Latinos aren't confident they can provide the best care

Disparities in medical services have long landed minorities on the losing end of the health care system, with several studies documenting the lack of quality care experienced by many black Americans.

More minority teachers = more successful minority students?

Ezra Klein's Wonkblog at the Washington Post has highlighted a study in California that found better classroom performance and a lower class dropout rate among minority community college students who were taught by minority instructors.

Mixed status: 'Many people just don't understand what families in my position are'

A couple of posts in the last month or so have addressed the mixed-status family, a phenomenon that is all too common in the United States.

Remembering Ricky, and the advent of Spanish on English-language TV

There was once a time, long before Dora the Explorer or Los Americans, that hearing Spanish on an English-language television show was something shocking.

In the news this morning: NYPD spied on Muslim students, more Latino kids affected by poverty, CA immigrant laws buck national trend, more

NYPD infiltrated Muslim student groups for intel - CBS News Investigators have been infiltrating Muslim student groups at Brooklyn College and other schools in New York City, according to police documents.

Poll asks, 'Should Columbus Day remain a federal holiday?'

Multi-American's sister blog DCentric at WAMU in Washington, D.C. has a mini-poll going as to whether or not the federal holiday we know as Columbus Day - observed today in the U.S.

Changing times on Boyle Heights' E. 1st Street (Video)

#loveLA from Steve Saldivar on Vimeo.

California Dream Act 101: What it does, who qualifies, and what happens next

On Saturday, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a landmark piece of state legislation that will allow undocumented college students to obtain publicly-funded financial aid, now only available to students who are U.

A formal Senate apology for the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act

The Beijing-based blog lawandborder.com has rounded up three news reports on a story that resonates deeply in California, but which was buried somewhat this weekend amid other news as the governor signed and vetoed bills.

In the news this morning: California Dream Act signed into law, SB 185 vetoed, Alabama immigrants make worst-case plans for kids, more

Jerry Brown signs California Dream Act - Los Angeles Times On Saturday, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that will allow undocumented college students to apply for state-funded financial aid, which they previously had no access to.

Brown: Yes to California Dream Act, no to race and gender in college admissions

While most of the attention was on the California Dream Act yesterday as today's bill-signing deadline loomed, a lesser-known but equally controversial California bill involving students of color met with a thumbs-down from Gov.

Tweeting the California Dream Act

The hashtag #dreamact has been trending on Twitter since Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law this morning a bill known as AB 131, which allows undocumented college students who meet state residency requirements to obtain state-funded financial aid for tuition.