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

Posts of the week: The underrepresented 'model minority,' how SB 1070 ruling is settling in other states, longest waits for immigrant visas,

This week's posts ran the gamut from backlash over a recent report on Asian Americans to how the U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona's SB 1070 anti-illegal immigration law is settling in states with similar crackdown measures.

Immigrants in the workforce: One in six U.S. workers is foreign born

The data crunchers at the Migration Policy Institute have updated a series of facts on the U.S. workforce and the role of immigrants in it, based on census numbers. It presents a pretty informative picture of who powers the American economy and where they come from.

In the news this morning: Migration from Central America, U.S. citizen alleges he was misidentified as deportable immigrant, more

Central Americans flood north through Mexico to US - Minnesota Public Radio Violence and poverty have been spurring more migrants to leave Central America for the United States, even as northbound migration from Mexico has dropped.

Show explores Los Angeles via its foreign roots

This could turn out to be cool: A TV show that traces different aspects of Los Angeles' polyglot culture back to immigrant roots. KCET is launching "Global L.A.," a partnership with the popular travel series Globe Trekker.

How the SB 1070 Supreme Court ruling is making its way through the states

Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Arizona's SB 1070 late last month, striking down three provisions of the state anti-illegal immigration law while upholding its most controversial one, other states with SB 1070-style laws have been weighing how the decision applies to them.

Note to green card seekers: Avoid the tattoo parlor

The Wall Street Journal has a piece today on how some hopeful legal residents have been turned down for green cards because their tattoos raised suspicion of gang or other criminal affiliation, although some insist they just like tattoos.

In the news this morning: Obama and Romney on immigration, SB 1070 and Latino voters, more

Where They Stand: Obama, Romney On Immigration - NPR A side-by-side comparison of the immigration policies and attitudes of President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, his Republican challenger for the White House.

Note to green card seekers: Avoid the tattoo parlor

For some hopeful legal residents, tattoos have presented a problem in obtaining a green card.

Survey: Majority says immigration policy is for the feds, not the states

As the handful of states that have enacted their own immigration laws in recent years weigh which way to go in light of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Arizona's SB 1070, a new survey suggests one reason why more states haven't gone the way of Arizona: Many Americans don't care to.

American snapshot: North Redondo Beach

An obvious example of the growing trend of marketing to Latinos in English? Definitely.

Debating the 'i' word: Three different opinions, including one from the AP

Some popular opinion pieces recently have revived the long-running debate over the use of "illegal" as a way to describe immigrants in the United States without permission, with back-and-forth over what terms are or aren't acceptable alternatives and whether alternatives are even in order.

Survey: Majority says immigration policy is for the feds, not the states

More than three-fourths of Americans surveyed in a recent tracking study said immigration policy should be handled by the federal government; 20 percent said it should be left to the states.

Who had the longest wait for an immigrant visa this month?

We're well into July, which means it's time for another look at the wait times for family-sponsored visas. The long line has shifted somewhat, but it hasn’t budged much. According to the U.

In the news this morning: Another local attempt to limit S-Comm participation, Romney a no-show at NCLR, states' role in enforcement, more

Emanuel wants to make official undocumented immigrant detainer policy - Chicago Tribune Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants to make official a policy that would have local police only detain undocumented immigrants who are suspected or convicted criminals for immigration officials; a similar policy is being weighed at the state level in California.

Who had the longest wait for an immigrant visa this month?

Some hopeful immigrants in the Philippines and Mexico who are being sponsored by relatives must wait more than two decades to move to the U.S. legally.