Leslie Berestein Rojas

Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter

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

Fears stir in Vietnamese community that US seeks more refugee deportations

Advocates for the Vietnamese American community say they fear the Trump administration may be negotiating with Vietnam to take back thousands of refugees who came to the U.S. decades ago.

Fears stir in Vietnamese community over refugee deportations

Community advocates say the Trump administration may be negotiating with Vietnam to take back thousands of refugees who came to the U.S. decades ago.

Can anything fix the immigration court backlog?

The backlog of pending cases in immigration court nationally and in Los Angeles has spiked by nearly 50 percent since the start of fiscal year 2017.

Street vending to be legal in most of LA, but not everywhere

Certain no-vending zones have been designated, and vendors who've long done business in these areas say they're disappointed.

Los Angeles finally adopts plan to legalize street vending

After years of debate, the Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday unanimously approved a plan to legalize street vending, allowing vendors to get permits to operate.

Los Angeles groups make plans to aid asylum seekers

In the Los Angeles area, groups serving Central American immigrants are working with legal advocates to plan how to help any asylum seekers.

Have Latino voters have turned a corner in voter turnout?

A new UCLA study suggests that turnout among Southern California's Latino voters jumped in the Nov. 6 midterm election over 2014.

Feds blame minor errors for immigration court confusion

The nation’s immigration courts are already dealing with a backlog of more than 760,000 pending cases. But things got even messier this week in L.A. and elsewhere.

Harvard suit has split local Asians over affirmative action

Trial begins Monday in an anti-affirmative action lawsuit that alleges Harvard University’s race-conscious admissions process discriminates against Asian students.

As refugee admissions drop, two lifelong friends wait

The Trump administration has cut the number of refugees allowed into the country and that hits close to home for one Anaheim man.

Judge sides with Huntington Beach in anti-sanctuary lawsuit

A Orange County judge has sided with the city of Huntington Beach in its argument that it should not have to abide by California’s so-called sanctuary law.

Could new rule prompt LA immigrant families to drop public aid?

Local officials say they're worried immigrant families could drop out of public medical, food or housing programs even if the rule does not affect them.

Will more LA immigration judges ease growing case backlog?

Los Angeles has the nation's second-largest backlog of immigration court cases, second only to New York. New immigration judges are being hired, but are they enough?

Long Beach Cambodians seek a stronger political voice

Long Beach is home to the largest group of Cambodians in the country, but they lack a political voice. Now some are pushing to redraw City Council boundaries.

A year after it was rescinded, DACA is still afloat - for now

It's been exactly one year since the Trump administration announced it was rescinding the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which lets hundreds of thousands of young unauthorized immigrants who arrived as children live and work in the U.