Friday, March 30, 2012

You speak a foreign language? Teach it to your kid!

I completely agree, bilingualism is wonderful and it is so much easier to learn a second language as a young child than when older.   - - Donna Poisl

Posted by Ailen Arreaza

Can I be critical and opinionated for just a quick second? Okay, thanks.

I think that immigrant parents who don't speak their native tongue to their kids are doing them a huge disservice. And whenever I encounter one speaking in — often broken and accented — English with their offspring I have to take deep breaths to overcome the overwhelming desire I get to slap some sense into them. Don't they realize that speaking a foreign language to their kids now pretty much guarantees them a successful career in the future? Don't they know that those kids are going to learn English anyway from TV and school? Ugh!

One of the first major parenting decisions Tony and I made, even before our son was born, was to only speak to him in Spanish. Now that he's almost three, he can fully understand and communicate — as well as a toddler can — in both languages.
http://clclt.com/EverybodyLovesBaby/archives/2012/03/29/you-speak-a-foreign-language-teach-it-to-your-kid
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 The Carroll County Literacy Council: A Pathway to Citizenship

Groups all across this country should do what this council is doing, they are helping immigrants through every step to become a citizen.  - - Donna Poisl

from Carroll County News

Staff from the Carroll County Literacy Council traveled to Tulsa on March 26th to attend a workshop sponsored by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The title of the workshop was "Teaching Civics and Citizenship to Immigrants."

"Most people don't know that applying for U.S. citizenship is a multi-step process that can take years to achieve," said Sharon Sloan, President of the Carroll County Literacy Council (CCLC). "It is also an expensive process. Just filling out and filing the N-400, the Application for Naturalization form, costs $680."
http://www.carrollconews.com/blogs/1250/entry/47035/
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State AGs: Arizona Immigration Law Should be Rejected by Supreme Court

This would be good news if it happens.   - - Donna Poisl

from latino.foxnews

The attorneys general of New York, California and nine other states filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the U.S. Supreme Court arguing against Arizona's tough immigration law.

The Arizona measure, SB 1070, makes it a crime to be undocumented while in the state.

A federal district court blocked enforcement of the law's most controversial aspects pending a final resolution of legal challenges brought by the U.S. Justice Department and various organizations.
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2012/03/28/state-ags-arizona-immigration-law-should-be-rejected-by-supreme-court/
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AIC Applauds Supreme Court Decision Rejecting Retroactive Application of Immigration Law Provision

For Immediate Release
March 29, 2012

Washington, D.C.—Yesterday morning, the Supreme Court issued an important decision, Vartelas v. Holder, No. 10-1211, rejecting the retroactive application of a provision of a law passed by Congress in 1996 that has prevented many lawful permanent residents (LPRs) from returning to the United States after a trip abroad.  Citing the "deeply rooted presumption" against applying new laws retroactively, the Court ruled 6-3 that LPRs who temporarily leave the country cannot be denied readmission on account of criminal convictions that occurred before the law took effect. 

The Justice Department argued that LPRs with certain criminal convictions may be barred from re-entering the United States any time they leave the country—even if the law in effect at the time of their guilty pleas did not make them eligible for deportation or ineligible for reentry to the United States. The Supreme Court properly rejected this argument, noting that the government’s interpretation effectively prevented such LPRs from ever leaving the country.

The following is a statement from Benjamin Johnson, Executive Director of the American Immigration Council:

“The Supreme Court’s decision properly recognizes that legal immigrants should not be subjected to penalties that did not exist at the time they entered a criminal plea.  The government’s argument that green card holders who pled guilty to crimes prior to 1997 could avoid the adverse consequences of the law by simply staying home makes no sense. As Justice Ginsburg noted in the majority opinion, loss of the ability to travel abroad could prevent such individuals from fulfilling religious obligations or responding to family emergencies. The Supreme Court’s ruling affirms the well-established principle that the government cannot change the rules in the middle of the game.”

###

For more information, contact Wendy Sefsaf at wsefsaf@immcouncil.org of (202) 507-7524.
Racism in the Tech industry?

http://www.onlineitdegree.net/is-tech-racist/
Check this site out. A large graphic shows some figures about how Hispanic and black workers compare with white workers in the Tech Industry.
This could be a good reason for immigrants, especially Hispanics, to get a university degree and get into this field. 


We need to unite in the United States

This is a good column, comparing the original plan for assimilation with what is happening now.   - - Donna Poisl

by Bob Lanzotti, Guest Columnist

Assimilation, once the goal of every American immigrant, need not be a thing of the past. Our national motto, E Pluribus Unum (From many, One), was the brainchild of John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin in 1776 to complement the unity of colonies into a nation, later the United States of America. E Pluribus Unum still appears on every U.S. coin. Once upon a time, the national motto was appropriate for America’s immigration policy. We even referred to America as the “Great Melting Pot.” From many immigrants came many American citizens.

But that was then, this is now.
http://mdjonline.com/view/full_story/18036506/article-Bob-Lanzotti--We-need-to-unite-in-the-United-States?instance=secondary_story_left_column
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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Our View: Give immigrants chance to gain English skills

Immigrants know how important English fluency is to their success here, and many people complain that immigrants don't learn English and yet, funds are being cut to help immigrants learn English. This makes no sense.    - - Donna Poisl

Opinion from Pressherald.com

Finding the funds to make language classes readily available makes all kinds of sense.

If there's one thing nearly all Americans agree on, it's that a command of the English language is necessary for finding a good job and living a productive life in this country.

And it's not at all uncommon for some people to criticize recent immigrants for a perceived inability (or even a lack of desire) to master the language of their new homeland.

That criticism makes little sense, because most new immigrants realize very quickly that a working knowledge of English is a necessity for navigating the ins and outs of life in the United States. That's why it seems both sad and senseless for Portland's adult education program to be falling short of the funding it requires to teach English to immigrants.
http://www.pressherald.com/opinion/give-immigrants-chance-to-gain-english-skills_2012-03-28.html
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Esther Cepeda: The language of assimilation

This article compares some of the assimilation stories about German immigrants in the 1700s and Latino immigrants now.     - - Donna Poisl

BY ESTHER J. CEPEDA / Washington Post

CHICAGO -- Back in the mid-1700s, German immigrants were the bane of my favorite founding father, Benjamin Franklin, who believed they'd never assimilate into the predominant culture of the time.

Franklin believed the immigrants were "generally of the most ignorant, stupid sort of their own nation" and thus unable and unwilling to learn English. "As few of the English understand the German language, and so cannot address them either from the press or the pulpit, ‘tis almost impossible to remove any prejudice they once entertain," he wrote, complaining that few of their children were taught English, they imported books from Germany, printed materials in their native language and even "the signs in our streets have inscriptions in both languages, and in some places only German."
http://journalstar.com/news/opinion/editorial/columnists/esther-cepeda-the-language-of-assimilation/article_8b7848f4-e70a-5b7c-8a52-1bdfdfb7b49a.html
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Pieces of the Past: Memoir recounts the amazing two-floor school and other charms of second-generation rural immigrants

This memoir about immigrants in the rural parts of our country during the Depression should be very interesting, seeing what they went through compared to now.     - - Donna Poisl

from Carol Kammen

Not all Finger Lakes Finns live in Newfield and Spencer. There was also a small migration to Dryden in the 1920s.

Elias Huhtanen came to the New World from Finland by way of Canada, then slipped across the border into Minnesota. He worked in the iron mines.

In 1906 he instructed his son George, about age 12, to join him, and George followed the same route. He too, worked in the mines and also as a lumberjack.
http://www.theithacajournal.com/article/20120324/NEWS01/203230326/Pieces-Past-Memoir-recounts-amazing-two-floor-school-other-charms-second-generation-rural-immigrants?odyssey=nav%7Chead
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English-Only Teaching Ignores Bilingual Benefits

Bilingualism helps in many ways, yet most states are teaching English only classes. You have to know your language well in order to completely learn another language, so this report makes good sense.    - - Donna Poisl

By ANDREA DYRNESS, The Hartford Courant

As a spate of new research shows, it's good to speak a second language.

Bilingualism, it turns out, is a lifetime benefit, and not just for traveling to other countries. The ability to use two or more languages promotes cognitive flexibility, improves attention processes and has been shown to delay the onset of Alzheimer's and dementia in old age.

The very bad news is that as this research comes to light, educational policy in U.S. schools is moving away from bilingualism. Since the late 1990s, a movement to restrict the use of languages other than English in instruction has gained ascendance, resulting in bans on bilingual instruction in three states so far — California, Arizona and Massachusetts — and the curtailing of bilingual education in many other states.
http://www.courant.com/news/opinion/editorials/hc-op-bilingualism-makes-us-smarter-20120323,0,550496.story
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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

PRESS RELEASE

HIAS Joins Brief Urging Supreme Court to Overturn Arizona’s Anti-Immigrant Law

Tue, Mar 27, 2012

(New York, NY) – In advance of the Supreme Court’s consideration of Arizona’s controversial immigration law (SB-1070) next month, HIAS, the global migration agency of the American Jewish community, has signed on to an amicus curiae brief submitted today urging the Court to strike down the law. More than 100 faith-based, community, and civil rights groups joined the brief.

Under Arizona's law, local law enforcement officers are required to obtain proof of legal status from anyone whom they stop and "suspect" is in the country illegally. Anyone suspected of being undocumented could potentially become a target of investigation and harassment. Entire communities are living in fear. States across the country have enacted similar legislation, with the goal of making communities so unwelcoming that undocumented immigrants have no choice but to leave.

According to the brief, “If the enjoined provisions of S.B. 1070 are allowed to go into effect, they will work harms on individuals who would not suffer such harms under the federal immigration scheme. Although purportedly targeting ‘unlawfully present’ immigrants, S.B. 1070 will dramatically harm the lives of U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (“LPRs”), and other individuals across a spectrum of immigration statuses—such as asylum seekers and victims of violent crimes—in ways that run counter to the federal immigration scheme.”

According to Gideon Aronoff, HIAS President and CEO, “Throughout our history, Jews have been considered strangers and outsiders in their communities, and we know too well the pain of living in fear. We know that racial profiling incites feelings of helplessness, frustration, anxiety, and anger for innocent victims. As a nation founded by and for immigrants, we must provide a hospitable legal framework for today's immigrants to arrive and integrate.”

The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the case on April 25, 2012.
For a century, HIAS Chicago has helped immigrants find freedom in America: Here are a few of their stories...

HIAS was founded 100 years ago, to help Jewish immigrants but they have expanded their focus to help all immigrants and refugees.  http://www.hias.org - - Donna Poisl

By Lisa Pevtzow

Nearly every week, Suzanne Franklin and her grandmother, an immigrant from Romania who lived with her family, would make rugelach cookies together.

"She would put her hands on my hands and we would slowly roll the dough together," said Franklin, now the executive director of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society of Chicago, supported by the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. Franklin's grandmother would reminisce how she would make them with her own mother. She would talk about the sweetness, but also about the sadness of being an immigrant and of leaving her family.

"It was her way of talking about Romania," said Franklin.
http://www.juf.org/news/local.aspx?id=414761
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U.S. Immigration Patterns Are The Result Of Unintended Consequences, Not Policy: Report

A better legal farm worker law 50 years ago would have made our present immigrant "problem" non existent.     - - Donna Poisl

By Andrew Becker

U.S. policies and laws aimed at improving the nation's immigration system have unintentionally spurred more immigrants - authorized or not - to stay in the United States, according to a new paper released today.

The paper, "Unintended Consequences of U.S. Immigration Policy," released by Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, seeks to explain the reasons behind the surge in immigrants from Latin America since 1965, placing blame on the elimination of a legal - but vilified - migrant worker program, intervention in wars in various Latin American countries and more difficulties in entering - legally or otherwise - the United States.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/22/us-immigration-patterns-a_n_1372729.html
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Refugees find solace in photos

These refugees from Bhutan are in a program that uses photos they take of their American lives to share with others in the group.    - - Donna Poisl

By Stacey Burling, Inquirer Staff Writer


On a recent morning, a small group of refugees from Bhutan proudly pointed to a laptop screen displaying photos they had taken of Philadelphia, their new home.

Karna Karki had taken pictures of a Hindu priest, seated on the floor with an array of bowls and a flame that symbolized life before him, part of a naming ceremony for a new baby. He also snapped a solemn group in the midst of 13 days of mourning.

The dominant Buddhist culture in Bhutan had tried to extinguish such rituals, Karki, 41, said with the help of a fuzzy interpreter on a cellphone speaker. "They told us to follow their rituals."
http://articles.philly.com/2012-03-22/news/31225550_1_refugee-camps-photos-group-therapy
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Immigration issues touch many denominations
 This is very interesting, showing how religious groups view immigration differently by reading different messages into the Bible teachings.    - - Donna Poisl

By Bob Smietana, USA TODAY

NASHVILLE – The Bible tells its readers to obey the law, but it also tells them to welcome strangers and foreigners.

That has left some Christians divided over the issue of immigration reform.

Members of Clergy for Tolerance, based here, say new immigration laws have to mix justice with compassion.
http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/story/2012-02-22/religion-immigration-reform/53694314/1
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US Supreme Court will hear Arizona’s SB 1070

from Donna De la Cruz, Reform Immigration FOR America

You and I have witnessed the fallout from the current patchwork of state immigration laws: while we win victories in California and Illinois, we face devastating moral and humanitarian crises in Alabama and Arizona. A stance must be taken at the federal level to ensure that we can move forward to reform our immigration system as an entire nation.

Next month, the US Supreme Court will take on Arizona’s extreme anti-immigrant law, SB 1070.

The impact of the Supreme Court’s decision on SB 1070 can’t be overstated. For all those who have fought back against this racist law for nearly two years, this could be the moment our government declares once and for all that state-sponsored hate and racial profiling will be not be tolerated.

While the justices debate, we will be in the streets and online across the country, calling for justice and equality under the law for all immigrant families. We are planning for a week of action with national and grassroots partners, to make sure the court knows that the entire country will be following their decision.

I’ll be writing more soon about all the ways you can get involved. If you or your community is planning events around the Supreme Court case, let us know.

Simply put, Arizona’s SB 1070 is un-American – and we will unite to act for justice for all. Stay tuned for more details.

With hope,
Donna De la Cruz
Reform Immigration FOR America

PS: As part of the week of action, national allies will be launching an exciting project to encourage thousands of eligible individuals to start the process for naturalization. If you want to learn more about this project, please sign up for more information.  http://act.reformimmigrationforamerica.org/sign/april_natualization_day/?akid=863.16086.y-5Quu&rd=1&t=3
For Immediate Release

The American Immigration Council Announces Honorees for the 2012 Immigrant Achievement Awards

March 27, 2012

Washington D.C. - The American Immigration Council is pleased to announce the winners of the 2012 Immigrant Achievement Awards. The Awards celebrate the remarkable accomplishments of immigrants in innovation and entrepreneurship. The Council will celebrate the honorees on March 29, 2012, as part the 17th Annual Washington D.C. Immigrant Achievement Awards. The honorees include:

Immigrant Achievement Awards: Dr. Jane E. Shaw, Chairman of the Board, Intel Corporation and Dr. Alfredo QuiƱones-Hinojosa, Assoc. Prof., Neurosurgery and Oncology, Johns Hopkins University Hospital.

Immigrant Youth Achievement Award: Vineet Singal, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Anjna.

Stephen K. Fischel Distinguished Public Service Award: The Vilcek Foundation, Founders, Jan and Marica Vilcek.

“Each year we receive dozens of nominations that highlight immigrants who are making remarkable contributions to America” said Benjamin Johnson, Executive Director of the American Immigration Council. “This year’s focus is on the important mark immigrant entrepreneurs and innovators are making on America. However our event seeks to remind everyone about the enduring and significant contributions immigrants make, in all fields, and at all levels, every day."

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For more information, contact Wendy Sefsaf at wsefsaf@immcouncil.org or 202-507-7524.

For Irish immigrants, Canada has become a destination of choice over the US

by Marisa Feil - Canadian Immigration Lawyer at FWCanada

In the last few years, Canada has been attracting more and more Irish nationals to live and work in the country, who are flocking to Canada as opposed to their traditionally favoured destination of the United States.

Between 2010 and 2011 alone, the number of Irish temporary immigrants in Canada increased by 1,000, to over 5,200. At the same time, according to a recent column in the New York Daily News, the United States' stricter immigration policies means that more and more Irish nationals are immigrating elsewhere, and Canada is a prime destination for these highly skilled workers.

The column states, "Now, many are immigrating to Australia, Canada and England. And as some two centuries of previous Irish immigration have amply shown, our loss of this wealth of talent is the gain of our economic rivals."

Thanks to the influx of Irish workers, the Irish Canadian Immigration Centre was launched in Toronto over the past weekend. The Centre's goal is to help recruit larger numbers of skilled workers to immigrate to Canada.

Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Canada Minister Jason Kenney said that Canada can take advantage of the highly educated, highly skilled, young Irish nationals as the Irish economy is struggling to recover from the crisis in Europe.

These workers are able to find work in Canada and integrate easily because the country already boasts a large Irish community dating back hundreds of years, and there are no significant language or culture barriers they need to worry about.

To that end, Canadian immigration authorities are currently considering ways to make it easier for these Irish temporary workers to immigrate to Canada permanently.

"We'd like to give them a more realistic choice of staying here as permanent residents. We're happy to be in competition with Ireland for the talents of their young people," Kenney said.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Spanish language classes help open the door to English for many city immigrants

These Latino immigrants never learned to read and write in Spanish, but they must know Spanish in order to take English learning classes.  Volunteer groups are helping them learn both.   - - Donna Poisl

By Erica Pearson / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Carmen Gonzalez’ favorite book is Anne Frank’s “The Diary of a Young Girl.”

Like readers around the world, the 46-year-old Mexican immigrant was inspired by Frank’s hope and courage. But there’s another reason she likes it best.

A Spanish translation of the classic work was the first chapter book Gonzalez was able to read with ease.

“It helps me leave this world — these letters speak,” said Gonzalez, a housecleaner who lives in Harlem. “I had no idea.”
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/spanish-language-classes-open-door-english-mexican-immigrants-city-article-1.1047871
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The Buzz: Undocumented immigrants honored in California Assembly
Shining the spotlight on their status may help more people realize how much we need immigration reform. They went through high school, some graduated from college and they can't get hired, they won't be paying taxes from jobs they are able to do.    - - Donna Poisl

from www.sacbee.com

Five undocumented immigrants received a standing ovation on the Assembly floor on Monday for their campaign to prod changes in federal immigration law.

The immigrants are walking from San Francisco to Washington, D.C., to lobby for the federal Dream Act, which would provide a pathway to citizenship for longtime residents who immigrated illegally and later graduated from U.S. high schools.

No lawmakers protested Monday's recognition – almost all Democrats stood to applaud, but many Republicans stayed in their seats.
http://www.sacbee.com/2012/03/20/4350926/the-buzz-undocumented-immigrants.html
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Passing Immigration Relief Can Make Dreams Come True

It is such a waste of our talented kids; we educate them through high school and then they can't go to the top universities that they are qualified to attend. We need immigration reform soon and the DREAM Act now.   - - Donna Poisl

FROM GLORIA BONILLA SANTIAGO

If you can look a poor child in the eye and tell her that she can't attend the college of her choice -- a university to which her hard work and exceptional grades earned her admission -- then you might believe that immigration reform is not the answer.

But, if you experience what I do each day, then you would quickly recognize the need for relief for undocumented students.

The sooner, the better.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gloria-bonilla-santiago/dream-act_b_1345721.html
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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

U.S. red tape delaying visas for Iraqi allies

These refugees are in danger because they helped the U.S. side in the war and visa delays are forcing them to stay in Iraq. They helped us, we have to help them.    - - Donna Poisl

By Kristina Wong-The Washington Times

Thousands of Iraqis, including many who served as interpreters and contractors for the U.S., are caught in bureaucratic delays as they await visas or refugee status to come to the U.S., according to regional experts, who say the lives of some are in danger.

About 30,000 Iraqis who have been approved conditionally for refugee status cannot come to the United States because of a cumbersome security-clearance process, a panel of experts hosted by the Truman National Security Project said Monday.
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/19/us-red-tape-delaying-visas-iraqi-allies/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS
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Top Ten Facts about Hispanics in Illinois

 PRESS RELEASE

WASHINGTON, March 19, 2012 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- On the eve of the Republican primary in Illinois, the Hispanic Leadership Network released its "Top 10 Facts about Hispanics in Illinois."  In Tuesday's primary, there are 749,000 eligible Latino voters in Illinois. Below are some interesting facts about Hispanics in the Prairie State.

There are roughly 2.3 million Hispanics in Illinois which constitute 15.8% of the state's population (U.S. Census Bureau, 2010).
There are 749,000 eligible Hispanic voters in Illinois (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
In Illinois, 38% of Hispanics are eligible to vote. In contrast, 77% of the state's Non-Hispanic White population is eligible to vote (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
A third (33%) of Hispanic eligible voters in Illinois is 18 to 29 years old, compared to 27% of Non-Hispanic Black eligible voters and 20% of Non-Hispanic White eligible voters (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
In Illinois, 28% of Hispanics do not have health insurance. In contrast, only 9% of Non-Hispanic Whites do not have health insurance (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
The annual personal earning of Hispanics 16 and older is $21,600, whereas the annual personal earning of Non-Hispanic Whites is $33,000 (Pew Hispanic Center, 2009).
The median age of Hispanics in Illinois is 26, whereas the median age of Non-Hispanic Whites is 40 (Pew Hispanic Center, 2009).
Between 2000 and 2010, the Hispanic population grew over 35% in Illinois (U.S. Census Bureau, 2010).
Roughly 4% of all Hispanics in the United States reside in Illinois (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
In Illinois, 27% of Hispanic eligible voters have not obtained a high school diploma, compared to 20% of Non-Hispanic Black eligible voters and 9% of Non-Hispanic White eligible voters (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).

To book an interview with HLN Executive Director Jennifer Sevilla Korn, please contact Lisette Garcia at 202-370-3454 or via e-mail at lgarcia@americanactionnetwork.org

ABOUT JENNIFER S. KORN
Jennifer S. Korn is Executive Director of the Hispanic Leadership Network. Ms. Korn has eighteen years of experience as a conservative strategist. Previously, Ms. Korn served in the George W. Bush Administration as Director of Hispanic and Women's Affairs in the White House, as well as Senior Advisor to the Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice. Prior to her public service, Ms. Korn was National Hispanic Director and Southwest Coalitions Director on President Bush's 2004 re-election campaign. As such, she developed and supervised the implementation of the strategy that resulted in President Bush receiving 44% of the Hispanic vote. Ms. Korn was born in East Los Angeles and is the first in her family to attend college. She is a military spouse.

ABOUT HLN
The Hispanic Leadership Network is an advocacy action group focused on engaging the Hispanic community on center-right policies based on the principles of freedom, limited government and individual empowerment. HLN serves as a home for center-right Hispanic advocates across the country whose goal is to restore opportunity and prosperity in America.

For more information about HLN, visit our website at http://hispanicleadershipnetwork.org/, visit our page on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HispanicLeadershipNetwork or follow us on Twitter @HispanicLN.

SOURCE Hispanic Leadership Network


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Fort Worth museum exhibit focuses on immigrants entering through Galveston

A new exhibit showcases immigrants and tells their stories of life in America and how they got here.   - - Donna Poisl

BY MARY ROGERS, Special to the Star-Telegram

Sunlight streams through the wall of glass and seems to fill every corner of this contemporary home, but on this day, Arnie Gachman isn't thinking about the modern world. He settles into a comfortable chair ready to tell the old stories of struggle and sacrifice, determination and hope; stories his grandfather told him about long-ago friendships and dreams fulfilled.

He lays two framed photographs of his late grandparents on the glass coffee table: Jacob "Jack" Gachman and Edith Zodin Gachman. They are handsome people at the prime of life. Like thousands of other immigrants, Jack and Edith came to the United States through Galveston, which was a major gateway from 1845 until 1924; Ellis Island opened in 1892. Now that immigration experience is showcased in an exhibit at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History.
http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/03/18/3817576/fort-worth-museum-exhibit-focuses.html
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One city, two worlds: Stories from both sides of the debate in Memphis over Muslims in America

This article shows both sides of the Muslim American story, very interesting.   - - Donna Poisl

By David Waters

Rashad Sharif likes to catch his fellow Memphians and Muslims off guard by repeating his favorite Southern Arabic greeting: "Assalamu alaikum, y'all."

The Arabic part means "Peace be with you," which Sharif used to say to his fellow Christians every Sunday when he was an Episcopal altar boy. The Southern part is becoming more and more familiar to his fellow Muslims in Memphis, most of whom are immigrants from the Middle East, South Asia and Africa.

The phrase usually elicits a laugh from the audience, which for Sharif is a sign that Memphis and Islam are getting better acquainted.
http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2012/mar/18/one-city-two-worlds-stories-in-memphis-muslims/
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Why immigrant workers are critical to the economic recovery

There are other reports that show this same information. If we want our economy to recover we need a large number of immigrant workers.   - - Donna Poisl

By J.D. Harrison

Foreign-born workers represent an exceptionally high share of the labor force in roughly half of the country’s fastest-growing and largest-growing sectors, according to new analysis of government data, suggesting that immigrants have a critical role to play in the ongoing economic recovery.

U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projections show that 15 occupational fields are expected to grow by at least 42 percent between 2010 and 2020, and among those, immigrant labor currently makes up a disproportionately large percentage of employment (greater than the overall share of foreign-born workers) in seven sectors. Similarly, they represent an exceptionally high share of the labor force in eight of the 15 sectors expected to add the greatest number of jobs during the decade.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/on-small-business/post/why-immigrant-workers-are-critical-to-the-economic-recovery/2012/03/16/gIQAZvuyGS_blog.html
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Chicago Promotes Creation of Immigrant-Owned Businesses
 
Chicago has new workshops to help immigrants create and grow small businesses.   - - Donna Poisl
from Latino Fox News

Chicago –  Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Thursday announced in the Mexican neighborhood of La Villita in Chicago a series of workshops to train and promote among immigrants the creation and expansion of small businesses.

The New Americans Small Business Series, which is being organized by the city office created to deal with the problems of local immigrants, will begin on March 31 at the National Museum of Mexican Art.
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/lifestyle/2012/03/15/chicago-promotes-creation-immigrant-owned-businesses/
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Doctor gets US citizenship certificate from Fla. immigration officer whose life he saved

The surgeon who operated on this woman received his citizen certificate from her.  He saved her life and now she has helped him in his life here.    - - Donna Poisl

from Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. — An otherwise routine citizenship ceremony was extra special Wednesday for a Florida immigration officer who presented a naturalization certificate to a doctor from Peru who saved her life with an emergency brain surgery.

In front of 450 people from 75 countries gathered in the Tampa Convention Center, immigration services officer Melissa Wingerd presented Dr. Gabriel Gonzales-Portillo his naturalization certificate. The new citizens clapped, cheered and waved U.S. flags.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/doctor-gets-us-citizenship-certificate-from-fla-immigration-officer-whose-life-he-saved/2012/03/14/gIQAKxDLCS_story.html
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Food in 2 Worlds: Are Healthy Eating Messages Reaching NYC’s Immigrants?

More programs are needed to educate immigrants about healthy eating in their new country. Many serious conditions and obesity are common for immigrants.   - - Donna Poisl

By Juhie Bhatia
At a ‘Cooking Matters for Families’ class at the Bronx Spanish Evangelical Church in December, around 30 participants sat under fluorescent lights at tables with Christmas-themed plastic coverings. Fruits and vegetables lay in front of them on flimsy cutting boards. The day’s menu: veggie pizza on whole wheat English muffins and a fruit and yogurt parfait. The instructions were translated into Spanish, as two-thirds of the class was Hispanic. Then everyone started chopping. The children–who made up half the class–used colored plastic knives.

While obesity and related health conditions disproportionately impact Latinos and other minority groups in New York City, there is no coordinated effort to reach immigrant groups with healthy eating messages. To fill the gap, various organizations and individuals are developing their own ways to encourage these groups to eat healthier.
http://news.feetintwoworlds.org/2012/03/13/tailored-healthy-eating-messages-target-nyc-immigrants/
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Friday, March 16, 2012

Five Irish immigrant laborers murdered in 1832, re-buried in Pennsylvania's West Laurel Hill Cemetery

Here is another story about the Irish immigrant laborers who were reburied recently.  - - Donna Poisl

By: Kathy Matheson, Associated Press

BALA CYNWYD (AP).- The remains of five Irish laborers who researchers believe were murdered in 1832 while building a Pennsylvania railroad received a dignified re-interment Friday, more than 3,000 miles from their homeland and nearly two centuries after their first anonymous burials.

People lined up to pay their respects before five wooden caskets at West Laurel Hill Cemetery in Bala Cynwyd, just outside Philadelphia. The sounds of bagpipes and gunshot salutes filled the air as more than 100 mourners paid tribute, including Kevin Conmy, deputy ambassador for the Irish embassy in Washington.

"What this does is it just reminds us that the story of Irish in America has many strands," Conmy said. "You do get a sense that justice has been done to these people."
http://www.artdaily.org/index.asp?int_sec=2&int_new=54111
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Long-forgotten dead of Duffy's Cut get proper rites

Immigrants in the early 1800s, especially the hated Irish, had a very hard time when they came here. It is thought several of these people may have been murdered.    - - Donna Poisl

By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer


When the bodies of the 57 Irish immigrants were dumped into a mass grave in 1832, it was a secret, perhaps meant to shroud a violent end.

But 180 years later, in a ceremony to commemorate the railroad workers' deaths, there was pomp and fanfare.

Bagpipes, a procession, and a regal, 10-foot high Celtic cross grave marker were part of a funeral service Friday meant to give five of the 57 the proper burial they never had.
http://articles.philly.com/2012-03-11/news/31145477_1_railroad-workers-researchers-philadelphia-columbia-railroad
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Leonard Pitts Jr.: A lost opportunity for understanding

A very interesting observation about Muslims in America and how far they still have to go, even though they thought they were accepted already.   - - Donna Poisl

By Leonard Pitts Jr.

A few words on what American Muslims need.

We were discussing this, an olive-skinned Muslim man and I, at a banquet last year, when he said a wistful, poignant thing that has stayed with me ever since. "We thought we were white," he said.

Not "white" in the sense of race, whatever that unscientific word means. Rather, white in the sense of assimilation and admission, white in the sense of people from Ireland, Armenia, Cuba, Hungary, southern Italy and other places who, upon arriving here, were regarded as threatening, nonwhite outsiders and required to earn their whiteness, their acceptance, over several generations. When the man said American Muslims thought they were white, he meant they thought they had successfully navigated the trail blazed by all those other people from all those other places.

Then came Sept. 11, 2001. All that progress -- and almost 3,000 human lives -- went up in smoke, and Islamophobia stormed America.
http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_20140567
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Beyond St. Patrick’s Day, The ‘Irishness’ of New Jersey

New Jersey has a strong Irish history and celebrates it every year.  - - Donna Poisl

By Young Soo Yang

They say everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day. Here in New Jersey, that may be more true than elsewhere. According to saintpatricksdayparade.com, New Jersey has more St. Patrick’s Day parades than any other state — a total of 26 this year.

But beyond the parades, the Irish over the past four centuries have had a lasting impact on this state, profoundly shaping its identity in agriculture and industry, in education and arts, and most importantly in state and local government. Consider the gubernatorial trifecta of Richard Hughes, William Cahill and Brendan Byrne, just a few in a long line of New Jersey governors who can lay claim to Irish ancestry.
http://www.njtvonline.org/njtoday/2012/03/09/beyond-st-patricks-day-the-irishness-of-new-jersey/
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Alabama Can’t Enforce Two More Parts of State Immigration Law

At least this horrible law is being delayed, maybe saner minds will get involved.   - - Donna Poisl

By Edvard Pettersson

Alabama was barred from enforcing two more provisions of its immigration law while a federal appeals court considers a challenge to the statute, described by critics as the harshest such measure in the country.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta yesterday expanded its Oct. 14 order blocking the state from implementing parts of the law, freezing enforcement of restrictions on transactions between the state and undocumented immigrants and a provision making private contracts unenforceable if either party was known to be undocumented.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-09/alabama-can-t-enforce-parts-of-immigration-law-during-appeal-court-rules.html
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THIS WEEK IN IMMIGRATION

http://immigrationimpact.com/
Click the LINK to read stories from this week from the Immigration Policy Center.
For Immediate Release

The Politics of Skill: Rethinking the Value of “Low-Skilled” Immigrant Workers

March 15, 2012
Washington D.C. - Today, the Immigration Policy Center releases The Politics of Skill: Rethinking the Value of “Low-Skilled” Immigrant Workers by Natasha Iskander and Nichola Lowe. This perspectives piece explores and challenges the standard views on “high-skilled” vs. “low-skilled” immigrant workers in the United States.

The authors affirm the importance of skill in the development of immigration policy but they question the assumption that it is only derived from formal schooling and classroom education. Instead, they focus on the tacit skills of newly arrived Latino immigrant workers in the construction industry, many of whom continue to create or perfect construction techniques and carve pathways for training immigrant co-workers and new labor market entrants.

By acknowledging and highlighting the under appreciated expertise of these immigrants, the authors hope future immigration policy will reflect their real value as skilled workers who revitalize laggard industries in this country, saving vital U.S. jobs and businesses along the way.

To view the paper in its entirety, visit:
The Politics of Skill: Rethinking the Value of “Low-Skilled” Immigrant Workers (IPC Perspectives, March, 15, 2012)
http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/perspectives/politics-skill-rethinking-value-low-skilled-immigrant-workers
###

For more information contact Wendy Sefsaf at wsefsaf@immcouncil.org or 202-507-7524

Immigration Documentary: "9500 Liberty"

from Anthony Naing

My name is Anthony Naing and I am hoping to spread knowledge of an important documentary on Immigration titled "9500 LIBERTY".  The film documents 8 weeks in Prince William County, VA where "Arizona style" immigration policy was implemented and the battle for human rights that took place during it.  The film touched me on a very deep level, first because my parents are immigrants and second because I live only 45 minutes from Prince William County and yet I had no idea such a devastating blow to civil liberty had occurred.


For Immediate Release

New Data Highlights Immigrant Integration and Economic Contributions

March 7, 2012
Washington D.C. - Today, the Immigration Policy Center releases a snapshot of the Pew Hispanic Center’s extensive review of Census data. This data demonstrates that immigrants integrate into U.S. society over time and contribute to the U.S. economy. According to Pew’s analysis, most immigrants have been here for more than a decade and over time are more likely to become homeowners and learn English. Moreover, growing numbers of immigrants are becoming U.S. citizens and voters. The Pew data also shows the degree to which immigrants fuel labor-force growth and fill valuable roles in the economy as workers in both high-skilled and less-skilled occupations. In short, the data shows immigrants continue to be integral to the nation’s social and economic fabric.

To view the fact sheet in its entirety, see:
Pew Analysis Highlights Immigrant Integration and Economic Contributions (IPC Fact Check, March 7, 2012)
http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/pew-analysis-highlights-immigrant-integration-and-economic-contributions
###
For more information contact Wendy Sefsaf at wsefsaf@immcouncil.org or 202-507-7524.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 7, 2012

Dr. Warren H. Stewart Sr., Pastor and Civil Rights Leader Elected Chairman of National Immigration Forum Board

Phoenix, AZ - On Friday, March 2, 2012, Dr. Warren H. Stewart Sr. was elected the new chairman of the National Immigration Forum Board of Directors. Serving on the Forum’s board since 2010, Dr. Stewart is senior pastor of First Institutional Baptist Church in Phoenix, Ariz., and has been a leading advocate against Arizona’s SB 1070 immigration law. 

In his 35-year pastoral career, Dr. Stewart has focused on issues of justice, including efforts to establish a Martin Luther King Jr. state holiday in Arizona. Drawing parallels between the 20th century Civil Rights Movement and today’s efforts to recognize, celebrate, and build consensus about the contributions of immigrants in America, Dr. Stewart is perfectly poised to lead the Forum forward.

“To advocate for the value of immigrants and immigration to our nation is to fortify a pillar of America’s history, heritage and hope,” Dr. Stewart said. “After all, immigrants—voluntary and involuntary—founded and built the United States. The demographics of our country are changing, but our differences and diversity make our country stronger when we recognize one another’s contributions.”

"Arizona has long benefited from the Pastors fierce advocacy for human rights. He has a rich history of working with Immigrant Rights groups including being a founding advisory board member of Promise Arizona" commented Petra Falcon, executive director for Promise Arizona. "We believe the pastor has the vision crucial to move the national dialogue in the right direction."

Contact:
Dominique Medina
Digital Information Manager
dominique@promiseaz.org
(602) 633-4333

  # # #
PRESS RELEASE

Top 10 Facts about Puerto Rico and Its U.S. Citizens

WASHINGTON, March 16, 2012 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- On the eve of the Republican primary in Puerto Rico, the Hispanic Leadership Network released its "Top 10 Facts about Puerto Rico and its U.S. Citizens."  Below are some interesting facts about La Isla del Encanto and its American electorate.

Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory with Commonwealth status whose residents are U.S. citizens by birth since 1917 (CIA World Factbook, 2012).
While its residents are U.S. citizens, Puerto Ricans cannot vote in the U.S. general presidential elections because Puerto Rico is not a state (U.S. Constitution).
Currently, more than 10,000 active duty military personnel from Puerto Rico serve across the branches of the U.S. Armed Forces (Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration). 
Since 1917, more than 200,000 American citizens from Puerto Rico have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, serving in every conflict since World War I (Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration). 
Puerto Rico hosts primaries for both the Democratic and Republican parties; there are 23 delegates available in this year's GOP primary (CNN Election Center, 2012).
Puerto Rico's total population is 3,998,905 (CIA World Factbook, 2012).
The unemployment rate in Puerto Rico is 15.1% (U.S. Department of Labor, 2012).
More than half - 51.6% - of Puerto Ricans have private insurance coverage (U.S. Census Bureau, 2010).
More than 20% of Puerto Ricans have a bachelor's degree, whereas only 16% of Puerto Ricans residing in the mainland have a bachelor's degree (Pew Hispanic Center, 2010).
Florida is gaining a net 7,300 Puerto Ricans a year, far more than any other U.S. state (U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey, 2011).
To book an interview with HLN Executive Director Jennifer S. Korn, please contact Lisette Garcia at (202) 370- 3454 or via e-mail at lgarcia@americanactionnetwork.org. 

ABOUT JENNIFER S. KORN
Jennifer S. Korn is Executive Director of the Hispanic Leadership Network. Ms. Korn has eighteen years of experience as a conservative strategist. Previously, Ms. Korn served in the George W. Bush Administration as Director of Hispanic and Women's Affairs in the White House, as well as Senior Advisor to the Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice. Prior to her public service, Ms. Korn was National Hispanic Director and Southwest Coalitions Director on President Bush's 2004 re-election campaign. As such, she developed and supervised the implementation of the strategy that resulted in President Bush receiving 44% of the Hispanic vote. Ms. Korn was born in East Los Angeles and is the first in her family to attend college. She is a military spouse.

ABOUT HLN
The Hispanic Leadership Network is an advocacy action group focused on engaging the Hispanic community on center-right policies based on the principles of freedom, limited government and individual empowerment. HLN serves as a home for center-right Hispanic advocates across the country whose goal is to restore opportunity and prosperity in America.

For more information about HLN, visit our website at http://hispanicleadershipnetwork.org/, visit our page on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HispanicLeadershipNetwork or follow us on Twitter @HispanicLN.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Immigrant student in Miami allowed to stay under Obama immigration policy

This young woman is her class valedictorian and is being allowed to stay here and prepare for college.    - - Donna Poisl

Patrik Jonsson | The Christian Science Monitor
http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/immigrant-student-miami-allowed-stay-under-obama-immigration-policy

The Obama administration has given a reprieve to a high-achieving Florida high school student, Daniela Pelaez, a Colombian national who faced deportation before graduating as valedictorian of North Miami High School.

Daniela's fight to stay in the United States, to which she emigrated from Colombia as a 4-year-old, will continue despite the deferral handed down by the US Department of Homeland Security, but she'll be able to graduate with her class in June and start preparing for college. She has a 6.7 grade point average and wants to attend an Ivy League school in the US.
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North metro school reaches out for a cultural connection

This is an excellent idea, and it helps both sides (and the students), while solving a problem for both.    - - Donna Poisl

Article by: BRYNA GODAR, Star Tribune
http://www.startribune.com/local/north/141369563.html

Maria Reyes used to be nervous about going to her children's elementary school, embarrassed to talk to the teachers. Her kids' report cards used to just be numbers, and she didn't know what they meant.

An immigrant from Mexico, Reyes understands English well enough, but still isn't completely comfortable speaking it. Like many immigrant parents, she was hesitant and unsure of how to get involved in her children's education, largely because of this language barrier.

For the past few years, staff at North Park Elementary in Fridley have been working to overcome this barrier by involving Latino parents in volunteer work at the school.
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For Latinos, Immigration More Personal than Political, Poll Says

Latinos are not a "one issue" group, they pay attention to several things. Politicians should pay attention to them.    - - Donna Poisl

Written By Elizabeth Llorente, Fox News Latino
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2012/03/06/for-latinos-immigration-more-personal-than-political-poll-says/
It’s not a dinner table topic for many of them, or the sole issue that will influence whom they support for president in November.

But Latinos still listen closely to what candidates say about immigration.
A new Fox News Latino poll conducted of 1,200 likely Latino voters nationwide, under the direction of Latin Insights, shows that they care most about the economy when it comes to the presidential race.

Nearly 50 percent said jobs and the economy were the top issues for them – a markedly smaller group, 12 percent, consider immigration a top issue when choosing the President.
But immigration – and the tenor of discussions on the campaign trail about immigrants – clearly matters a lot to Latinos on a personal level. Indeed, for many Latinos, immigration is personal.
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DREAMers personalize cases to stall deportation

 These immigrants have found that if they tell their stories to the public they have a much better chance of stopping the deportation process.  - - Donna Poisl

By Alan Gomez, USA TODAY
http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/story/2012-03-12/dream-act-illegal-immigration/53502528/1

Growing up in Ann Arbor, Mich., Mohammad Abdollahi was given the same guidance that countless parents of illegal immigrants have told their children — don't tell anyone how you came into the country.

Abdollahi's parents immigrated to the U.S. from Iran on a student visa when he was 3, but did not return when the visa expired, so the entire family was living in the U.S. illegally. Abdollahi heeded his parents advice, until two years ago when he felt they were getting close to being deported.
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Immigrants with long-expired visas tough to track

This article shows why you can't just "round them up and ship them out", as some people want.  - - Donna Poisl

By ALICIA A. CALDWELL

WASHINGTON - (AP) -- By the time the suspect in an alleged bomb plot against the U.S. Capitol was arrested in a parking lot, wearing what he thought was an explosive-laden suicide vest, he had been living illegally in the United States for 12 years.

The criminal case against Amine El Khalifi, 29, of Alexandria, Va., has renewed the debate about how the U.S. government -- a decade after the terror attacks of 2001 -- routinely fails to track millions of foreign visitors who remain in the country longer than they are allowed.
http://www.newsday.com/news/nation/immigrants-with-long-expired-visas-tough-to-track-1.3581436
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Canadian pardon services

The National Pardon Centre is a family-run, non-profit organization providing the fastest and most efficient Canadian pardon services and US entry waiver services in Canada.

Founded by Nicole Levesque and Michael Ashby in September 2002, it has become the most complete pardon and waiver service available.

As a RCMP accredited fingerprinting agency we are capable of handling your file from start to finish. While other companies hide their fees and outsource crucial steps in the pardon application we handle everything for you. We are upfront and honest. We offer realistic expectations and we promise that we will advise you on YOUR best interest. It is our promise to you because we are here to help you get things on track. At the National Pardon Centre we understand how a criminal record affects YOU. And we want to help!
http://www.nationalpardon.org/
Click on the link above to read more about this company and its services. This is only a small part of it.

TheHispanicBlog.com Launches a Movement to Get Out the Vote

PRESS RELEASE

MIAMI, March 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- Jessica Marie Gutierrez, CEO of the Hispanic Marketing company Influential Access, LLC. launched thehispanicblog.com to galvanize a movement that inspires Latinos to register and get out the vote.

Thehispanicblog.com is already a leader in social media and being recognized by top industry leaders including South by Southwest's "The Social Revolucion" (sponsored by Univision) that nominated Gutierrez for thehispanicblog.com. This fascinating site arouses interest and captivates Latinos in order to engage and educate. It ignites a passion for politics and issues that plague our people. It's a gateway to discover our courageous icons of yesterday and highlights the Entertainment in our community today. Moreover, it yields Marketing updates of savvy corporations dauntlessly investing their dollars into our market because they recognize our purchasing power in the US alone surged and surpassed a trillion dollars; a colossal figure equivalent to the 15th greatest economy in the world.

Yet many believe our vote doesn't count because individually it will not determine the next election, but what we failed to realize is that when we do vote, then every politician will know the name of every Latino that voted. Therefore, when we add just one more vote to the "overall Latino vote," then that number adds up and that's what makes a difference.

Like most Latinos, I grew up in the pit and not the palace, but I was relentless and graduated college. I moved to Miami, a city where my mind was transformed, and I stumbled upon a new world that was beyond my wildest dreams. Suddenly I was among the elite – from working with celebrities, jet setting around the world to meeting with President Obama. I realized that I am living proof that our mind determines who we are, what we can do and what we can have! Therefore, my fellow Latinos share thehispanicblog.com with your network, post it on your Facebook, share it with the world and let's show America que Si Se Puede!

To advertise on thehispanicblog.com please email me at jessica@influentialaccess.com.

Jessica Marie Gutierrez
CEO, Influential Access and Creator of The Hispanic Blog
(786)301-2377
jessica@influentialaccess.com

Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click appropriate link.
Jessica Marie Gutierrez
http://www.profnetconnect.com/influentialaccess/

Monday, March 05, 2012

New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council contract groundbreaking for immigrant workers

This is good news for immigrant workers, this contract may be used for other industries too. - - Donna Poisl

by Albor Ruiz, NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

At a time when the influence of unions is supposed to be waning, things are looking up for the many thousands of immigrants who work at New York hotels.

The reason: The extraordinarily favorable contract the 30,000-strong New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council and its president, Peter Ward, negotiated last month.

The union’s new seven-year financial pact, which goes into effect July 1, received much attention in the media when it was announced but it also provides important groundbreaking protections for immigrant workers which could — and should — become a model for future contracts.
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Voter ID, immigration laws take center stage as demonstrators re-enact Selma-Montgomery march

Immigrants and minorities are two groups being hurt by the new voting laws in some states. We thought this was solved almost 50 years ago! - - Donna Poisl

By Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — It won’t just be about history when crowds cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge this weekend and recreate the famous civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery — it will be about targeting Alabama’s toughest-in-the-nation immigration laws and its new voter ID requirements.

Organizers expect thousands to participate in the crossing of the Selma bridge for the 47th anniversary of the 1965 incident when peaceful demonstrators were attacked by police in what became known as “Bloody Sunday.” The violence helped spark passage of the Voting Rights Act.
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Thousands protest deportation order against North Miami Senior High valedictorian

Our country needs students like this one to stay here, go to university, start a business, hire workers, pay taxes, etc. - - Donna Poisl

BY ALFONSO CHARDY AND LAURA ISENSEE

More than 2,600 students and teachers at North Miami Senior High took to the streets Friday to protest an order by an immigration judge for their valedictorian, 18-year-old Daniela Pelaez, to depart the country.

The demonstration marked one of the biggest immigration protests in South Florida since 2004 when President George W. Bush first proposed the legalization of millions of undocumented immigrants.

The rally drew attention from national media and politicians including Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.
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Latino voters to candidates: What are we, chopped chorizo?

Only 12 million, of the 21 million Latinos eligible to vote, will vote in November. This could be part of the reason candidates are ignoring them. Why don't more of them vote? That would get candidates' attention. - - Donna Poisl

by Mary Sanchez

American politicians have a Latino problem. And it isn’t the stereotypical immigrant patting tortillas, singing corridos in Spanish or sneaking across the border.

Their problem is the Hispanic U.S. citizen — more likely than not to be assimilated, English-speaking and preoccupied with issues that have nothing to do with their ethnicity. Latinos make up a rapidly growing demographic group, and voting bloc, yet Democrats and Republicans alike fail to grasp their concerns and aspirations.
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Immigrant Entrepreneur Turns Small Business Ideas into a Success

This author helps Latino entrepreneurs start successful businesses. - - Donna Poisl

Written By Joe Kutchera

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanics open businesses three times faster than the national average. Once regarded as a minority group, Hispanics now represent the fastest-growing segment of our economy.

To make their businesses successful, Latino entrepreneurs in Southern California have been turning to Eduardo Figueroa, a consultant, author, and workshop leader, for almost 20 years.

Figueroa reports that many of his clients start their own businesses because they have been laid off and don’t have any other option. Others want to be their own boss. A few aim to become millionaires.
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THIS WEEK IN IMMIGRATION

Click the headline to read stories from this week from the Immigration Policy Center.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

LAPD: New impound law shows 'compassion' for illegal immigrants

Maybe this will help the immigrants think a little better of the police force too. - - Donna Poisl

Joel Rubin, L.A. Times

Calling it an act of “humanity” and “compassion” toward the city's illegal immigrants, the Los Angeles Police Commission on Tuesday approved a controversial plan to limit the cases in which police officers impound vehicles of drivers operating without a license.

The commission made the move despite warnings from Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and state lawyers that the new impound policy is illegal.

It marks a victory for immigration-rights advocates as well as Police Chief Charlie Beck, who has championed the new policy despite sharp criticism at public meetings, on talk radio and by some law enforcement officials.
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Alabama Immigration Law Opponents Plan More Pressure On Auto Manufacturers

Maybe this kind of pressure will help kill the laws. - - Donna Poisl

FROM ELISE FOLEY

Civil rights groups plan to increase pressure on automakers that have plants in Alabama in an effort to stop the state's contested immigration law, a member of the coalition told The Huffington Post on Tuesday.

As civil rights groups fight Alabama House Bill 56, considered the most extreme bill in the U.S. aimed at driving out undocumented immigrants, they are seeking help from foreign corporations such as Hyundai, Honda and Mercedes-Benz, all of which have plants in the state.
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3 NC Youth Arrested - Help?

from Viridiana Martinez, NC Dream Team

We need your help. Yesterday three undocumented youth were arrested inside the NC state legislature. They were arrested because they came out as undocumented and unafraid during a committee meeting where 12 legislators were going to decide what anti-immigrant bill to bring next.

Help us get the Raleigh 3 out of jail, donate to their bail! CLICK THE HEADLINE ABOVE

Now all three are in jail awaiting court in just a matter of hours and we need your help to make sure they are released. Bond has been set at $5,000 for the three of them (all together), can you help us raise it? Please donate $25 to help get the Raleigh 3 out of jail.

We need to keep taking action against anyone who thinks they can harm our community. They do this because they think we are scared and will never fight back. That's why the Raleigh 3 came out as undocumented and unafraid at the committee meeting, they did it to show these legislators, and any others thinking of doing the same, that we will no longer remain hiding and we are ready to fight back. Support the undocumented youth arrested by donating $25 to their bail fund.

These actions are not going to go away, we are only at the beginning of our fight. In North Carolina we are committed to fighting back any and all legislation and we really need to do the same all across the country. Please make a donation right now to support the Undocumented Bail Fund. All donations will help students like the Raleigh 3 get out of jail if they are arrested during a protest. Let's support the Raleigh 3!

Thank you.

Viridiana Martinez
NC Dream Team

Three Million: Changing Lives One Refugee at a Time

This is a good news story, for sure. - - Donna Poisl

FROM DAVID M. ROBINSON

This month Americans welcomed the three millionth refugees since 1975, helping them build new lives, homes, and communities in all 50 states. The United States is proud of its history of welcoming immigrants and refugees.

The 1980s saw primarily refugees resettling in the U.S. from Vietnam, Laos, and the Soviet Union. The 1990s brought large numbers of Bosnians as war engulfed the former Yugoslavia. In the 21st century, we welcomed refugees from Burma, Bhutan, Iran, Iraq and Somalia, among others, reflecting a more diverse and expansive refugee resettlement program.
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The Latino vote: A factor in swing states come November

I hope the Latino community realizes how important they are and studies the issues and then shows up and votes. - - Donna Poisl

By Rafael Romo, Senior Latin American Affairs Editor

(CNN) - If there was still any doubt about Mitt Romney's position on immigration, it was erased last Thursday during the CNN Republican presidential debate in Mesa, Arizona.

The former Michigan governor referred to Arizona's controversial HB1070 law as "a model" for the nation. The initiative approved in 2010 that cracks down on illegal immigration has been denounced by Hispanic and immigration rights groups as extreme.

Romney also said that "the right course for America is to drop these lawsuits against Arizona ... I'll also complete the (border) fence. I'll make sure we have enough border patrol agents to secure the fence and I'll make sure we have an (employment eligibility federal database) E-Verify system and require employers to check the documents of workers."
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Homeless Immigrants Alone, Adrift

It would be horrible to be homeless but in a strange country, with limited English and no hope, would be so much worse. - - Donna Poisl

by MERIBAH KNIGHT

One said goodbye, embracing his anxious parents. One left without a word, indignant and angry.

After traveling thousands of miles by bus, train and on foot, the two young men met in a homeless shelter on Chicago’s Northwest Side.

Oscar was a shy 15-year-old when his parents hired a local “coyote” in July 2008 to help him leave Veracruz, Mexico, and cross the border to seek work in the United States. Jorge, gregarious, bright-eyed and also 15, gathered up his 6-year-old cousin six months later and left Tegucigalpa, Honduras, in the middle of the night, to escape abuse that he said had escalated into fistfights with his father. He also planned to work and send money back to his mother.

Without knowing it, both were headed toward homelessness. In that, they joined thousands of other immigrant children who have left their native country — for work, family reunification or refuge — crossed into the United States and wound up alone.
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Evangelical leaders call for immigration overhaul

Church leaders are calling for immigration reform in a humane way. The Bible says "I was a stranger and you welcomed me". - - Donna Poisl

By Tom Bassing, BIRMINGHAM, Ala

(Reuters) - Evangelical Christian leaders took up a bully pulpit on Thursday to call for a "humane" overhaul of the U.S. immigration system in response to tough crackdowns on illegal immigrants enacted by Alabama and other states.

"Because I'm a Christian I believe in comprehensive, common-sense, humane immigration policy," the Rev. Gabriel Salguero, president of the New York-based National Latino Evangelical Coalition, told a conference of evangelical leaders in Birmingham.
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L.A. County sheriff would back 'sensible' plan to issue driver's licenses to illegal immigrants

If these people got driver's licenses, it would make the roads much safer for everyone. They would have to pass a driving test and would then get insurance. - - Donna Poisl

By Robert Faturechi and Joel Rubin, Los Angeles Times

L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca said he would get behind a "sensible" plan to issue driver's licenses to illegal immigrants who have been in the country for several years without breaking any other laws.

Baca's comments Thursday came the day after Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck also expressed support for such a plan, saying that it would reduce the number of hit-and-run accidents and uninsured drivers on city roads.
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Student teaching helps the community

I am sure the students are benefiting too while helping the immigrants in their community. - - Donna Poisl

by BEN DAY - STAFF WRITER

A literature course enhances its focus by tying Drew University with a nearby Hispanic community through an off-campus teaching program.

The course, “Latino & Latina Literature,” “focuses on putting Latino literature in a cultural and historic context and particularly drawing connections between the themes of Latino literature and the issues facing Latino communities in New Jersey,” Assistant Professor of English and Environmental Studies & Sustainability Sarah Wald said.

She hopes to accomplish this by volunteering with the non-profit Neighborhood House in Morristown, a former settlement house that is over 100 years old and is dedicated to helping new immigrants confront economic challenges and fostering cross-cultural relations.
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American 'illegals' in Mexico

This is an interesting story, it shows another side of the issue we have here. - - Donna Poisl

By Ignacio de los Reyes, BBC Mundo, Mexico City

The issue of undocumented Mexican migrants in America is widely reported. But what about the thousands of Americans living illegally south of the border? Mexico Direct looks at why they come, and why Mexicans aren't yet making an issue about it.

When Jessica departed the US early in 2011, she left a country where illegal immigration is rarely off the political agenda.

Little did she imagine she herself would become an 'alien' - in Mexico.
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Report: Tough immigration laws don't make illegal immigrants 'self-deport'

Even though they are sometimes afraid to stay here, the immigrants decide it is better to take the chance. It is not that easy to just "up and move" back to their home country. - - Donna Poisl

By DUSTIN VOLZ - Cronkite News Service

WASHINGTON - Strong family ties, the cost of returning to their native countries and fewer economic opportunities back home have kept illegal immigrants in the U.S., despite strict immigration laws here, a new report claims.

The report, released Wednesday by the Center for American Progress, said tough laws like Arizona's SB 1070 do not prompt illegal immigrants to "self-deport." Instead, those people either stay where they are, but "in the shadows," or they move to neighboring cities, counties or states, it said.
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Immigration chief seeks to reassure Silicon Valley

Non-citizens who are educated in our universities often have to leave to start their companies, even though they are needed here and would stay if they were allowed to. - - Donna Poisl

By Marcus Wholsen, Associated Press

MOUNTAIN VIEW -- The Obama administration's top immigration official said Wednesday he wants to keep more foreign-born high-tech entrepreneurs in the U.S. But to make that happen, he said he needs those entrepreneurs to turn their creativity to immigration itself.

Members of Silicon Valley's startup community met with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service Director Alejandro Mayorkas for what the agency billed as a summit to officially launch its unusual "Entrepreneurs in Residence" program.
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17th Annual Washington, DC Immigrant Achievement Awards

The American Immigration Council invites you to celebrate the remarkable accomplishments of immigrants from around the country at an inspiring and thought-provoking ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill on March 29, 2012.

This year marks our 17th Annual Washington, DC Immigrant Achievement Awards and we are excited to announce that we will be honoring immigrants who have contributed to our nation with their innovative and entrepreneurial accomplishments.
Click on the headline above to read the details of the ceremony and sign up to attend.