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

By the numbers: Just how welcoming is the U.S. to immigrants?

Ever wonder how the United States ranks in immigrant-friendliness? When you set the rhetoric aside and simply look at the numbers of people admitted, it appears at first glance to be the most welcoming nation in the world - until you compare that welcome based on immigrants as a percentage of its population.

Korean-speaking Lakers fans, rejoice

When the Lakers take on the Phoenix Suns Friday night, fans who speak Korean will be able to listen to the broadcast for the first time in their native language.

In the news this morning: A growing Latino electorate, detention centers criticized, an immigrant archive project, more

Latino vote could double by 2030 - ABC A new Pew Hispanic Center report projects that Latino voters will make up 40 percent of the growth in the nation's electorate by 2030, nearly doubling the number of Latino voters.

American snapshot: Sun Valley

Spanglish advertising is everywhere now, but it still jumps out when I see it. With advertisers recognizing the buying power of bilingual Latinos and media companies rushing to provide the second-generation audience with tailored content in English - and Spanglish - it's become totalmente normal to see the way many Southern Californians speak in their daily lives displayed in large print.

Visa fraud scheme involved laundering money by buying cemetery plots

An unusual employment visa fraud scheme that laundered money through the purchase of cemetery plots has landed the president of a now-defunct law firm behind bars.

Watchdog group's report condemns immigrant detention facilities

A watchdog group has issued a report condemning 10 immigrant detention facilities, including one in Orange County. Federal officials say they are reviewing the report.

In the news this morning: Shifting politics give immigrants hope, report condemns detention centers, remembering an LA Chinese American leader, more

Immigration U-turn has Hispanics seeing 'light at end of tunnel' - Reuters Some Latin American immigrants,"regardless of their immigration status, feel fresh optimism this week over newfound Republican willingness to consider immigration reform to avoid further alienating Hispanic voters.

Photos: Diwali in Southern California, from Artesia to Pasadena

Diwali, the "Festival of Lights," has its roots in India and surrounding nations, but is celebrated around Southern California by local Hindus, Sikhs and others.

Disney's 'Sofia the First': How does a real Latina princess look?

Disney's first "Latina" princess, who turned out to be not quite Latina after all, has inspired one mom to show the world what real-life Latina princesses look like.

In the news this morning: Immigration reform and the GOP, growing Asian American political clout, Diwali, more

Republicans rethink immigration reform after Romney loses Latino vote - Huffington Post Some GOP leaders have been publicly talking about the possibility of supporting immigration reform, but "the party remains divided over whether it will support a path to citizenship for the undocumented -- an issue that could cause problems and legislative delays in the Republican-controlled House.

Changing demographics and the GOP: Three good reads

Three writers analyze the electoral demographics and offer thoughtful takes on the changing face of the nation

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

The lines for family-sponsored visas are especially slow for immigrants coming from certain countries; some filed paperwork more than two decades ago.

American snapshot: Veterans Day

This isn't the first itme I've posted this photo, but I like it. The banner with this Marine's name was hanging along with many others featuring names of local service members - most of them also with Latino surnames - along the main streets a couple of years ago in Bell Gardens, a city in southeast Los Angeles County.

In the news this morning: The possibility of immigration reform, Latinos and the GOP's future, immigrants and 'American culture,' more

Immigration reform could be on new Congress' agenda - Boston Globe Since President Obama's reelection last week, aided by the support of Latino voters, "several Republican leaders, including House Speaker John Boehner, have said the GOP needs to reckon with immigration reform and pass a comprehensive bill.

Which Californians stayed home most on Election Day?

While overall voting numbers were down this year, voters of color – especially young ones – were a larger percentage of the electorate in California.