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

Some healthcare relief for restaurant workers, many of whom are undocumented

A pilot program in Los Angeles is promising to provide health coverage for uninsured restaurant workers, including undocumented ones. The plan is to launch a cooperative, funded in part by the Kaiser Community Benefits Fund and the California Wellness Fund, that for a contribution of $25 a month will allow its members access to primary care, preventive care, dental care and other basics through a community clinic.

Do lower crowd counts at rallies equal a 'weak immigration movement?'

There's an Associated Press headline that's been picked up by news outlets around the country by now in reference to Tuesday's rallies which reads, "May Day Protests Show Weak Immigration Movement.

In the news this morning: Healthcare for undocumented restaurant workers, two shootings involving ICE agents, more

Program offers healthcare for illegal restaurant workers in L.A. - Los Angeles Times A restaurant workers' group and a community clinic are starting a pilot program to provide health coverage to undocumented immigrants, who are ineligible under federal health care reform.

Do lower crowd counts suggest an ebbing immigration rights movement?’

Are crowd counts a good gauge of the movement's growth?

'Junior Seau meant so much to me and many other Samoan youth'

Junior Seau wasn't the first Samoan American player in the NFL, but he was considered a role model among many of those who followed him into pro football. Seau, 43, was found dead this afternoon in his Oceanside, Calif.

American Apparel's controversial CEO on immigration policies and the economy

In case you missed it yesterday amid the sea of May Day-related stories, KPCC's BlogDowntown featured an interview with Dov Charney, the famously controversial CEO of American Apparel, the über-hip clothing company behind "Legalize LA.

In the news this morning: Smaller immigrant rights crowds on May Day, Romney and Latinos, legal residents and political campaigns, more

Where Immigration Rallies Once Drew Hundreds of Thousands, Few Turn Out - Fox News Latino Participation in May Day immigration rallies yesterday was a fraction of what it was back during the massive protests of 2006, and this year the rallies were overshadowed by the Occupy movement.

American snapshot: May Day downtown, today

KPCC's Mae Ryan has been in downtown L.A. this afternoon snapping photos of various protesters as a series of May Day marches converge, including an immigrant rights march.

Beyond May Day and marches, an evolving immigrant rights movement

As an immigrant rights marchers wind their way through downtown Los Angeles this afternoon in one of a series of rallies tied to May Day in L.A. and throughout the country, today marks the sixth anniversary of a historic event that drew hundreds of thousands of protesters onto the city's streets.

American snapshot: A worker on Workers' Day, downtown

One of several May Day rallies taking place in Los Angeles today is an immigrant rights march downtown this afternoon, the latest in a series of annual large rallies organized by immigrant rights advocates each May 1 since 2006, the year of the so-called “Great American Boycott.

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

Illegal immigration to the U.S. may have slowed, but the long line for legal entry that many blame in part for driving some to take the illegal route doesn't seem to be moving any more quickly.

In the news this morning: May Day rallies, illegal immigration talk vs. numbers, Rubio working both sides, Arizona ethnic studies, more

May Day protests: Thousands to participate in rallies across L.A. - Los Angeles Times Street closures began this morning and will last through the day downtown, where there will be an immigrant rights march this afternoon.

On the state of May Day and immigrant rights

Today's May Day rallies will be interesting in that they're the first such events to take place post-Occupy, with that movement having dabbled a bit in immigrant rights, but only a bit.

Tweet of the moment: 'Preliminary estimate: Nearly 1,000 fires reported, says @LAFD #crisis'

At approximately this hour 20 years ago today in Los Angeles, this was the news.

Map reveals immigrant population growth and slowdown, state by state

The dramatic surge in migration that occurred during the late 20th century - and the slowdown since - can be seen state-by-state in a new interactive map put together by the Migration Policy Institute, which has compiled census data that contrasts the demographic changes in each state between 2000 and 2010 with those a decade earlier.