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: Landmark bills signed in Utah, Irish Americans' labor legacy, Japanese earthquake relief and memorial, more

Utah Governor Signs Landmark Immigration Bills - Fox News Latino One bill requires police to check the immigration status of people stopped on suspicion of a felony or serious misdemeanor.

Reaction to the question, 'Was the shooting of Manuel Jamines justified?'

The Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners ruled yesterday regarding last year's fatal police shooting of day laborer Manuel Jamines, backing the department's position that the officer's decision to shoot the Guatemalan immigrant was not out of line.

Star-crossed: Love in a cross-status relationship

A contributor to the Being Latino blog recently published a candid first-person essay about her relationship with her partner and the father of her child, an undocumented immigrant from Guatemala who was deported two years ago.

Japanese American groups, businesses step up quake relief efforts

As northeastern Japan struggles to recover from last Friday's magnitude 9 earthquake and the deadly tsunami flooding that followed, Japanese American groups and businesses in Southern California have continued expanding efforts to raise money for earthquake relief, with donation boxes at businesses and additional relief funds set up.

In the news this morning: New Mexico the most Latino state, cops defend L.A. day laborer's shooting, students tweet immigration status, more

New Mexico, the Most Latino State in the Union, Gets Even More Latino - Fox News Latino The state grew by more than 240,000 people over the last decade. Seventy-eight percent of that increase was due to Latinos, who now make up 46 percent of the state's population, up from 42 percent in 2000.

UCLA student in anti-Asian rant video claims threats, apologizes - and inspires more parodies

UCLA's Daily Bruin reports that the student who posted a video of herself ranting against "hordes" of Asian students on YouTube last Friday has sought the assistance of campus police after claiming to receive threats, and that she's issued an apology.

He's glad immigration agents didn't ask 'how to get to Sesame Street'

I don't usually resort to Spanish in this blog, but I had to after reading this story. ¡Dios mío! Actor and playwright Carlo Alban has written a confessional essay that, um, redefines the concept of hiding in plain sight.

'Coming out' undocumented: A Dream Act strategy becomes a rite of passage

Last week in Orange County, a line of about two dozen young people snaked around the side of a meeting hall. Mostly college students, they awaited their turn at the podium in the front of the room.

In the news this morning: Japanese American families hope for word of relatives, California Dream Act, Latinos and the census, more

Japanese Americans in LA try to make contact w/ victims - ABC7.com Some say they've had success reaching relatives via cell phone in the quake-ravaged area surrounding Sendai. But many said they've had no luck, and it's tough to stay optimistic.

Quote of the moment: 'Solitary confinement at a high security prison' for ranting UCLA student

"In fact, I am so upset that I believe she should be punished by expulsion, public humiliation, and maybe even solitary confinement at a high security prison."

Five disaster zones to remember, along with Japan

Since Friday, international aid organizations have been focused on the unfolding disaster in Japan, where supplies are running short and the death toll continues to mount after last week's devastating 8.

In the news this morning: Response to Japan earthquake, looted art from Armenia, minorities and lupus, Arizona's Latino growth, more

Japan earthquake: Japanese American groups in L.A. use Web to respond to quake - Los Angeles Times Japanese American community groups used social networking and other online tools over the weekend to coordinate efforts in response to Friday's killer earthquake.

Japanese American, other organizations in Southern California pull together for quake relief

Two large fundraising events for victims of last week's devastating 8.9 magnitude earthquake in northeastern Japan last week are taking place all day today at Angel Stadium in Anaheim and the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, where "drive-through" donations for the American Red Cross's relief effort are being accepted.

Site posts updates from Japan that are simple, heartbreaking

Throughout the day, as I've followed news of the continuing devastation in northeastern Japan after its 8.9 magnitude quake, I've linked a couple of times to one website that keeps drawing me back for its succinct updates.

Japan quake draws links, comments and prayers on Facebook

As has become the norm during world events lately, one of the ways in which people have been getting togehter to provide information, ask questions or simply comment on the killer earthquake that struck Japan yesterday afternoon is on Facebook.