immigration

In the last year, there was a nearly 100% increase in the number of unaccompanied child migrants crossing the United States-Mexico border. The result has been a humanitarian crisis on the border, a crisis that has an impact throughout the country, including in Kansas City.

 

Guests: 

  • Jennifer Harbury, immigration attorney, author and human rights advocate
  • Angela Williams, Kansas City immigration attorney, Angela L. Williams, LLC

In many school districts, immigrant students with low English comprehension aren't always immediately identified as needing ESL (English as a Second Language) courses when they enroll. A new proposal in Kansas City, Missouri would help identify these students earlier so they have access to the assistance they need. We look at this program as well as the latest trends in ESL education. 

Guests:

unbound.org

As the U.S. struggles with the thousands of "border kids" crossing its southern boundaries, one organization in Kansas City, Kansas is working with families in Latin America to help children remain in their own communities.

Neighborhood Centers Inc. / Flickr--CC

The Missouri Department of Higher Education is opening up a community college scholarship program to young adults who were brought to the United States illegally as children.

That means students who qualify for the program, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, will be able to trade tutoring hours for two years of tuition reimbursement through the A+ Scholarship Program. 

The deferred action program is tied to an Obama administration initiative that started in 2012. 

Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Update, 3:32 p.m.
Edher Palafox was released from ICE custody Thursday afternoon, his lawyer said in an email.

The original story appears below:

It’s been a year and a half since President Barack Obama announced an executive order that could potentially transform the lives of many undocumented immigrants.

Tood Dwyer / Flickr -- Creative Commons

On June 15, 2012 President Barack Obama signed a memorandum called the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Under this mandate, young people who were brought to the United States illegally as children can apply to attend public universities, get driver licenses and work legally.

However, DACA offers no path to citizenship and its future is uncertain.  

Laura Ziegler / KCUR

The National Socialist Movement, an organization that grew out of the American Nazi Party, held a rally in downtown Kansas City, Mo., on Saturday. By about 10 to one, opponents of the anti-immigrant rally outnumbered the neo-Nazis at  counter-protests close by- one across the street and a second at The Liberty Memorial.

John F. Kennedy was no King Arthur, but his life has often been compared to Camelot.

On Monday's Up to Date, we revisit Steve’s Bookshelf, a collection of books on Steve Kraske's radar right now. We talk with Thurston Clarke and Robert Dallek the authors of two different books that examine the former president’s policies. Also, author Domingo Martinez takes us into the life of a family trying to become “real” Americans on the Texas border.

Guests:

Children Of Meatpackers Dream Big, Cultivate Opportunity

Oct 30, 2013
Peggy Lowe / Harvest Public Media

Not yet 9 a.m. on a warm fall day, freshmen Binh Hua and My Nguyen are in protective goggles, long hair pulled back, ready for their chemistry class in a Garden City Community College lab.

The teacher calls the class to order, calling the students “Busters,” short for “Broncbusters,” the college’s mascot and a reminder of this old West town’s history of raising cattle.

Peggy Lowe / Harvest Public Media

Sister Janice Thome’s office is a 2003 brown Ford Focus with a backseat piled high with paperwork and a prayer book.

Thome puts 125,000 miles a year on this car, picking up boxes from the food pantry, finding a mattress for a newcomer, delivering a sick soul to a doctor’s appointment. All the while, she fields emergency calls on her flip phone, responding to her mission to serve the poor of Garden City, out on the plains of southwest Kansas.

This day, Thome is teaching her teen parenting class at the alternative high school.

Schools Become The Safety-Net For Immigrants In Rural Missouri

Oct 28, 2013
Abbie Fentress Swanson / Harvest Public Media

It’s almost 9 a.m., and Noel Primary School teacher Erin McPherson is helping a group of Spanish-speaking students complete English language exercises. But it’s tough going.

One student in a bright blue T-shirt – 9-year-old Isac Martinez – has not yet picked up his pencil. He’s clearly sick. When McPherson asks him what’s wrong, Isac’s small voice is barely audible in between coughs. He says he threw up four times last night but did not go to a doctor.

The newest book by Kansas City author Angela Cervantes tackles a tough subject: what happens when immigrant families are torn apart. Cervantes' approach is different: the book is written for a young audience aged 8-12, and tackles a topic difficult and all-too-familar to many of her intended readers.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

Republican Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins held a town hall meeting in Topeka Wednesday to hear opinions from voters in eastern Kansas, and many of them had immigration on their minds. Jenkins fielded several questions and comments about immigration and the discussion became quite heated.

Renee Slinkard from Parker said the U.S. should close the borders and increase immigration enforcement.

“Our immigration system is not broke,” said Slinkard. “Our immigration system is fine.  What is broken is the enforcement of that immigration system.”

The Ethics Professors: Government & Privacy

Jun 27, 2013
Terry Robinson/Flickr-CC

Should the government be able to access your telephone records? Are the actions of the NSA any worse than companies like Google that constantly mine our information? 

On Thursday's Up to Date, the Ethics Professors, Wayne Vaught and Clancy Martin, join Steve Kraske to discuss what boundaries the government has crossed and where to draw the line. They also explore the gray area of immigration reform.  

Border Blockage Seen Key To Immigration Law Change

Jun 20, 2013

As the U.S. Senate wrestles with immigration law changes, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach says the measures are doomed to fail without real border security.

Danie Alexander / KCUR-FM

Rev. Rick Behrens is pastor of Grandview Park Presbyterian Church in Kansas City, Kansas, an inner-city church with a congregation and a community largely made up of immigrants.  In this installment of 90-Mile View, Rick talks immigration policy and reform with Steve Kraske and what it means to the people he serves.

Divided Opinions Dominate Immigration Talks

Jun 19, 2013
Loretta Prencipe/ Flickr-CC

A new Kansas statute requires proof of citizenship before voting in an election for the first time. The controversial legislation has many people divided. 

 This hour, Kris Kobach, known for his influence on immigration law, and author Alvaro Vargas Llosa join Steve Kraske to discuss policy and reform.  

Juan Montana

The cultures of Kansas and Missouri was shaped by wave after wave of immigrants: from Germany, Ireland, Italy and Eastern Europe. A new exhibit called, The Missouri Immigrant Experience: Faces and Places portrays vivid images of the state’s diverse immigrants from the early nineteenth century to today.  The exhibit was sponsored by the Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates (MIRA), a coalition of organizations that advocates for immigrants.

Immigration reform is a hot topic for legislators nationwide, and this week both President Obama and a bipartisan group of senators proposed changes to immigration policy. In a city located in the dead center of the country, it might seem illegal immigration is not the biggest issue facing Kansas City, but that is not the case.

File Photo

The Missouri Senate’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Immigration held its final meeting Thursday.  Among the issues discussed was legislation that would require driver’s license exams be given in English only. 

By estimate of federal investigators, more than a hundred people from around the country used an illegal custom service to get Missouri driver’s licenses when they were not eligible.

A change in U.S. immigration policy last summer has translated into 800 new jobs for metro Kansas City.  The work will be both sides of state line and pay no less than $27,000 a year.

The Distance Between Us

Oct 16, 2012

On Tuesday’s Central Standard author Reyna Grande describes her experience living as in illegal immigrant in the U.S.

Her memoir, The Distance Between Us, is an intimate, graphic narrative about her early years left behind by her parents in Mexico, tumultuous time as a youth in America and journey to becoming a U.S. citizen.

Ayad Akhtar: American Dervish

Oct 2, 2012
ayadakhtar.com

A young Pakistani-American struggles to identify both as Muslim and American.

Pete Souza / Official White House Photo

President Obama surprised the country on Friday by unveiling a new immigration policy

The historic wave of migration from Mexico to the United States, which over four decades brought 12 million immigrants to the country, has come to a standstill. That's what a new Pew Hispanic Center study released today found.

At a Republican candidates' forum in Wisconsin before the state's primary earlier this month, a speaker who wasn't on the ballot had strong words for the GOP regarding its low standing among Hispanic voters.

"The way the party ... talks about immigration is going to impact the future course of this party and the future course of this nation," said former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, the first Hispanic to hold the nation's highest law enforcement post.

Becoming American In Missouri

Feb 22, 2012

In 2003 he left his life working as an attorney in London and Paris and moved to the much smaller community of Columbia, Missouri. Last week, he made it official. Alex George is a U.S. citizen.

A daily digest of headlines from KCUR.

Pages