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: NY minority youth plan draws fire, 16 countries oppose AL immigration law, new detention center debated, more

NYC program for young men draws praise, questions - The Wall Street Journal Mayor Michael Bloomberg's announcement of a $127 million project that aims to help about 315,000 black and Latino men between ages 16 and 24 is meeting with both praise and criticism.

On the media and Miles Morales, the brown Spider-Man

The killing off of Peter Parker by Marvel Comics and subsequent introduction this week of a new Spider-Man character named Miles Morales has provided ample fodder for media, especially after some fans began reacting negatively to the biracial Miles, who looks a bit like Tiger Woods.

What makes us more likely to marry outside our race?

Who is marrying whom? This was the question that sociologist Andrew Beveridge answered in a stellar graphic that ran earlier this year in the New York Times as part of a package on the emergence of an increasingly multiracial - though not post-racial - United States.

Why do well-off minorities live in poorer neighborhoods?

Earlier this week, outlets including USA Today and BET ran short pieces on a fascinating and troubling social dynamic: How affluent minorities tend to live in poorer neighborhoods than affluent whites.

In the news this morning: Bilingual parenting, minorities and the debt ceiling, backlash to a biracial Spider-Man, more

Bloomberg to Use Own Funds in Plan to Aid Minority Youth - The New York Times The New York mayor has announced plans to spend nearly $130 million on measures to improve the circumstances of young black and Latino men who are "cut off from New York’s civic, educational and economic life.

American snapshot: Bell

A wall of rainbow-hued Tampico fruit punch, a staple in the refrigerated drink aisles of grocery stores that cater to Latino customers. It's much like Sunny Delight ingredients-wise (water, high fructose corn syrup, a smidgen of juice concentrate, etc.

On Joaquin Murieta and California's Chileno legacy

In his most recent moonlighted post for KCET, my KPCC colleague Adolfo Guzman-Lopez writes about California's unsung Chilean legacy via the rededication last week of an East L.A. mural of Joaquin Murieta, the storied 19th century bandit.

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.