How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

In immigration news: Cost-of-reform report challenged, 'linguistic distance,' racial profiling allegations at USC, more

Access California Iraqis 202

Christopher Okula/KPCC

An English as second-language class at the Anaheim, Calif. offices of Access California Services, an organization that aims to address the needs of Anaheim's Arab American population. A study on so-called "lingustic distance" finds that immigrants have more difficulty in a new country when their native language is very dissimilar to the one they must learn.

Immigration cost: Statistically sound data or biased research? - ABC News Researchers and some Republicans are critical of a report from the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, which put the price of the Senate's immigration reform plan at $6.3 trillion. It's based on hypothetical costs that could be incurred if undocumented immigrants in the U.S. obtain legal status, qualify for and use public benefits. Critics say it lacks a good cost-benefit component.

Language distance: The reason immigrants have trouble assimilating - The Atlantic A study looks at at "linguistic distance," how different one's native tongue is from the language one is learning, and how it applies to challenges immigrants face: "In cases where immigrant communities aren't performing well economically, it could be partly because they're coming from countries where the language sounds too different and is thus harder to transition out of."

LAPD to probe allegations of excessive force, profiling in shutting down USC party - Southern California Public Radio An end-of-the-school-year party hosted by a University of California senior and attended by many students of color was shut down by Los Angeles police early Saturday morning. Students say officers engaged in racial profiling and used excessive force; the police department says it will investigate but defends officers' actions. 

Marco Rubio's task: Selling immigration reform to GOP faithful - Los Angeles Times Many conservatives who supported the election of Sen. Marco Rubio in Florida in 2010 aren't thrilled with his involvement in comprehensive immigration reform. It's an attitude the freshman Republican senator is trying to change.

A 'poison pill' in the immigration bill?: Planet Money - NPR The Senate immigration reform bill has fine print that would require employers to seek out candidates in the U.S. through the Department of Labor before they can move to hire high-skilled foreign workers.

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