How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

In the news this morning: Utah guest worker plan to face challenges, Latino job insecurity, proponent defends Muslim hearings, more

Utah immigration plan could stir legal storm - USA Today As much at it's a departure from the stricter immigration legislation approved in Arizona last year, Utah's newly approved guest worker bill will most likely wind up in federal court also if it becomes law. It was one of two state bills, the other calling for tighter enforcement, that could soon face legal challenges.

Latinos lack job security despite increase in hiring - Fox News Latino A report from the National Council of La Raza finds that while there has been job growth in sectors employing large numbers of Latinos, this population faces greater job insecurity.

Washington Senate Votes Down Driver's License Ban for Undocumented Immigrants - Fox News Latino A bill that would have restricted access to driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants and punished identification fraud was voted down Monday in Washington's state senate.

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More Dream Act students prepare to 'come out'

Photo by Leslie Berestein Rojas/KPCC

Student Dream Act supporters react after the Senate vote tally is read, December 18, 2010

This week, some undocumented students, graduates and others are expected to reprise the actions of other student activists last year with a risky move: going public with their immigration status.

The strategy gained popularity last year among young supporters of the Dream Act, proposed legislation that would have granted conditional legal status to qualifying young people who attend college or join the military. The measure cleared the House last December, but failed to make it through the Senate.

This year, several Dream Act advocacy groups and websites have been promoting what's being called "National Coming Out of the Shadows" week between March 14-21, kicking off with a "coming out" day this Thursday, March 10. Sites like DreamActivist.org have been seeking coming-out stories via Twitter and posting them. From one posted today:

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Utah bucks a trend by letting undocumented immigrants work

Photo by jphilipg/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Construction signs, August 2008

Last Friday, Utah became the first state to pass its own guest-worker bill, and one of two states lately to weigh anti-illegal immigration legislation that makes a work-related exception for undocumented immigrants.

Late last month, a Texas state representative otherwise known for her tough-on-illegal immigration attitude introduced a bill that would punish employers who hire unauthorized workers with jail time and up to $10,000 in fines, but makes an exception for those who hire maids, gardeners and other domestic workers. And the bill that cleared both legislative houses Friday night in Utah - part of a broader immigration package that includes tougher enforcement - would provide a two-year work permit to undocumented immigrants who could prove they had been living and working in Utah. In order to qualify, they would have to pass a criminal background check and pay fines.

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In the news this morning: Utah's guest worker plan, lawsuit over foreign same-sex spouses, White House to reassures Muslims, more

Utah Republicans Adopt Alternative Approach on Immigration - New York Times Utah has broken ranks with other states cracking down on illegal immigration by passing immigration bills that include a guest worker program which would allow unauthorized immigrants to work legally.

On the Internet, does anyone know whether you’re black or Latino? - Poynter.org As part of AOL's acquisition of Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington is to oversee AOL Latino, AOL Black Voices and other AOL sites.

Immigration group to sue federal government over DOMA - PinkPaper.com The LGBT group Immigration Equality plans to sue the federal government over the Defense of Marriage Act because it prevents married U.S. citizens from bringing foreign same-sex spouses to live with them.

ICE Addresses Pr. William County Lawsuit |- NBC Washington U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has released a report detailing why some undocumented immigrants previously picked up by authorities may have been let go. One of these was a man previously arrested twice for drunk driving who now stands trial in the drunk-driving death of a Virginia nun.

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