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: The 'last-minute' D.C. immigration meeting, Sheriff Baca and L.A. Muslims, unauthorized workers and taxes, more

LA leaders at White House for immigration meeting - 89.3 KPCC Immigration reform, the topic of what was described as a “last-minute meeting” at the White House yesterday, hasn’t placed high on the list of Congressional priorities.

A White House immigration 'call to action,' but no breakthroughs

Early news reports have been describing President Obama's immigration meeting this afternoon with several dozen elected officials, law enforcement, business, civil rights, religious and other leaders, all invited to the White House to discuss the prospect of a broad overhaul of the nation's immigration system.

At LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, the questions are on the floor

Last weekend I paid a visit to LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, the new museum chronicling Mexican American history and life in Los Angeles that opened Saturday.

Navigating the Armenian American supermarket: Part 2

A post yesterday kicked off an occasional series of informal guides to navigating the ethnic supermarket, the mega-store grocery chains catering to immigrants that have become a part of Southern California's regional landscape as its immigrant communities have grown and evolved.

In the news this morning: No 'birther bill' in Arizona, minorities in special education, an immigration reform summit, more

'Birther bill' vetoed by Arizona governor - CNN Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed a bill late yesterday that would have required President Barack Obama and other presidential candidates to prove they were born in the United States before their names could be placed on the state ballot.

The Pulitzer-winning reporter who could have been deported

A post in late March highlighted the story of Ruben Vives, a Los Angeles Times reporter who was once undocumented, brought here as a child from Guatemala by his mother.

Navigating the Armenian American supermarket

As Southern California's immigrant enclaves have grown and evolved, so have their grocery stores. The ethnic mega-supermarket is now part of the regional landscape, making it as easy to buy once hard-to-find products from around the world as it is to shop at Vons or Ralphs.

'Regulating freedom of choice:' Readers react to France's burqa ban

A Q&A post last week that highlighted the reactions of three prominent Muslim women in California to a controversial French law banning face-covering veils, enacted last week, has generated a lively debate in the comments section.

In the news this morning: A request to hold off on deporting youths, SB 1070 a year later, L.A. musician left comatose won't be deported, mo

Senate Democrats Tell Obama to Hold Off on Deportations of Young Immigrants - Fox News Latino Twenty-two Senate Democrats have signed a letter requesting that the deportations of young people brought here by their parents illegally or who overstayed visas be put off, suggesting alternatives.

'Be Italian?' No, be a Mexican (Video)

I'll confess that I've never seen the film or stage versions of "Nine," so I had no idea what "Be Italian" sounded like when a colleague sent me this video of a local singer who tweaked the lyrics.

KPCC joins Japan quake relief effort this weekend

More than a month after a magnitude 9 earthquake and the resulting tsunami devastated northeastern Japan, international relief efforts continue to build, and for good reason. At least 150,000 remain homeless, many of the estimated 28,000 people who perished are still unaccounted for, millions are without water or power, and an ailing nuclear plant continues to be a threat.

Emails illustrate 'disarray,' confusion over Secure Communities immigration program

Hundreds of emails from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released yesterday illustrate the confusion over Secure Communities, a federal fingerprint sharing program whose involuntary nature has frustrated local law enforcement in some jurisdictions, including in California.

In the news this morning: New Arizona-style law in Georgia, LA Plaza opens in L.A, a birther bill, Latinos and redistricting, more

Georgia immigration law: Georgia passes immigration bill similar to Arizona's - Los Angeles Times Police would be empowered to check the immigration status of "criminal" suspects and many businesses would be required to check the status of potential hires.

'Why do you only date white men?' An interracial dater explains

Please give a warm welcome to KPCC's Kim Bui, editor of the OnCentral blog and Multi-American guest blogger of the day:

Pik-sa, pisa or pizza?

A reader responding to a recent collection of awkward language moments experienced by English learners, or people who were raised by them, has shared a good one: "pik-sa," better known as pizza.