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

Timeline lists several attacks against Sikhs since 9/11

Since the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Sikhs have faced violence along with Muslims, who they are sometimes mistaken for.

Posts of the week: New deferred action guidelines, English-only debate returns, the immigrant diaspora summer camp, more

This week we saw more details on the Obama administration's plan to grant temporary legal status to young undocumented immigrants, along with a revived political debate over whether English should be the official language of the nation.

DHS announces more details on deferred action process

Homeland Security officials provided more details today on how young undocumented immigrants will be able to apply for deferred action, temporary legal status under a new Obama administration policy that's been shortened to an acronym, DACA, for "deferred action for childhood arrivals.

Credit for trying? Rep. Conyers' statement in Spanish at English-only hearing (Video)

His Spanish is about as broken as it can be, but Rep. John Conyers' (D-Michigan) decision to deliver his statement in Spanish at a House hearing on an English-only bill demonstrated that he's at least not ashamed to try, even if just to make his point.

In the news this morning: Feds say undocumented law grad can't practice, detained immigrants, Muslim Olympians, more

U.S. Justice Department opposes undocumented immigrant's right to get California law license - San Jose Mercury News The Obama administration has filed a brief with the California Supreme Court stating that granting a state law license to Sergio Garcia, an undocumented immigrant, would violate federal law.

DHS announces more details on deferred action process

Immigration officials have released guidelines for young undocumented immigrants applying for temporary legal status under a new policy. They can apply starting Aug. 15.

The immigrant diaspora summer camp, in photos

Earlier this week, contributor Lory Tatoulian wrote about a very special kind of cultural immersion summer camp.

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

It's the start of August, time once more to post the latest wait times for legal entry via the U.S. State Department’s monthly Visa Bulletin. The bulletin lists wait times for hopeful immigrants in several family-sponsored visa categories.

In the news this morning: Some hesitate on deferred action, activist 'self-deports' to witness detention, Latino leaders emerge in Anaheim

Politics: Some Undocumented Immigrants Hesitate on Deferred Action Out of Fear - Hyphen Magazine As many young undocumented immigrants prepare to apply for temporary legal status under a new Obama administration policy, some are skeptical and are hesitant about revealing their status to the government.

Profits keep rising for private immigrant detention contractors

Profits continue to go up for the private prison companies that contract with the federal government to house immigrant detainees, and the Associated Press has a good report today exploring the most recent profits and lobbying efforts of private jail companies.

Latinos less likely to borrow for college, more likely to live at home

This won't come as a surprise to those who have lived it, but a new Sallie Mae report on how college students pay for higher education charts the spending and saving habits of Latino students, including how fewer of them take out loans, and more of them live at home to save money.

In the news this morning: Latinos seeking representation in Anaheim, Arpaio profiling lawsuit, gearing up for deferred action, more

Anaheim community leaders ask for Latino rep in local government - Southern California Public Radio Latinos and other people color in Anaheim are seeking greater political representation in the city following the recent police shooting deaths of two Latino men, which have caused racial tensions there to surface.

Preparing for deferred action proves a paperwork challenge

As the mid-August date approaches for when young undocumented immigrants can begin to apply for deferred action - temporary legally status under a new Obama administration policy - those who think they might be eligible have been racing to get the paperwork they need.

Fresh air, canoeing, shoorchbar? Welcome to the immigrant diaspora summer camp

There are cultural summer camps, and then there are cultural summer camps.

As tension continues after police shootings, can Anaheim learn from Los Angeles?

Los Angeles Magazine has an interesting piece addressing the tense situation in Anaheim between police and residents, upset over the recent officer-involved shootings of two Latino men.