immigration

Anjali Alwis/WAER News

go home blacks
refugees
dirty immigrants
asylum seekers
sucking our country dry
niggers with their hands out
they smell strange
savage
messed up their country and now they want
to mess ours up
how do the words
the dirty looks
roll off your backs
maybe because the blow is softer
than a limb torn off

Anjali Alwis/WAER News

no one chooses refugee camps
or strip searches where your
body is left aching
or prison,
because prison is safer
than a city of fire
and one prison guard
in the night
is better than a truckload
of men who look like your father
no one could take it
no one could stomach it
no one skin would be tough enough

  

Nasreen was so excited that her journey was finally over! She remembers thinking it was the end of their troubles – they would soon be in Germany and reunited with her husband.

Anjali Alwis/WAER News

you have to understand,
that no one puts their children in a boat
unless the water is safer than the land
no one burns their palms
under trains
beneath carriages
no one spends days and nights in the stomach of a truck
feeding on newspaper unless the miles traveled
means something more than journey.
no one crawls under fences
no one wants to be beaten
pitied

Anjali Alwis/WAER News

no one leaves home unless home chases you
fire under feet
hot blood in your belly
it’s not something you ever thought of doing
until the blade burnt threats into
your neck
and even then you carried the anthem under
your breath
only tearing up your passport in an airport toilet
sobbing as each mouthful of paper
made it clear that you wouldn’t be going back.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner announced Monday her support for a campaign that aims to give Central New Yorkers driver's licenses regardless of immigration status.  About two dozen activists at the Worker’s Center of Central New York looked on as she signed a document urging the state to approve Green Light New York.  Miner says a license not only allows people to have access to community resources but also makes the roads safer.

Anjali Alwis/WAER news

no one leaves home unless
home is the mouth of a shark
you only run for the border
when you see the whole city running as well

your neighbors running faster than you
breath bloody in their throats
the boy you went to school with
who kissed you dizzy behind the old tin factory
is holding a gun bigger than his body
you only leave home
when home won’t let you stay.

facebook.com / Sharon L. Ames, Esq.

The Trump Administration’s travel ban on refugees and others is creating confusion…and heartbreak for families in Central New York and across the nation.  The executive order will impact everyone from new refugees to those who’ve lived in the U.S. on visas for decades.

Long-time Syracuse immigration attorney Sharon Ames says the administration’s “drastic measure” will be felt here in Syracuse.  The resettlement of 220 refugees already approved to move to Syracuse has been halted.  Ames says she spoke with a man who knew of an affected Syrian family.

Scott Willis / WAER News

A Syracuse immigration attorney and a political science professor specializing in immigration have serious doubts about the legality of President Trump’s moves to punish “sanctuary cities” by withholding federal funding.  Syracuse and New York City are among those that could be affected.  Lawyer Jose Perez says his phone has been ringing almost non-stop since trump won the election.

"Panic.  If you asked me for one word, it would be panic," Perez said.  "Everybody who has something to lose in immigration has called me."

Scott willis / WAER News

A Syracuse-based immigration attorney says President Obama’s executive order to protect millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation is a good first step…but could have gone farther. Jose Perez says even though the action is based on family unity, it doesn’t help everyone.  

Under the president’s executive order, undocumented immigrants who have been in the U.S. for at least five years and have children born in the U.S. would get a reprieve from deportation and be eligible to apply for work permits.  Perez says he’s already getting calls from clients asking if they qualify.  

Immigrant farmworkers are among those who say they appreciate the president's efforts, but the executive order won't help many of them.  

Naturally, republicans in congress are furious, and say the president’s action all but kills any future chances for comprehensive immigration reform.  Immigration attorney Jose Perez wonders wants to ask them why.

npr.org

Syracuse  Mayor Stephanie Miner today sent a letter to President Barack Obama formally extending her offer to use the City of Syracuse as a site for relocating Latin American children who have crossed the Southern border.  In a release, she says the City of Syracuse is known for welcoming new immigrants and it currently is home a large population of refugees from across the globe. Miner says the City of Syracuse has been visited by representatives from federal agencies seeking to review a site for possible placement of migrant children.  She says Federal officials have made it clear that the Department of Health and Human Services will pay for and provide all services for children through its network of grantees. Miner says before the children would be placed in Syracuse, they would undergo a well-child exam, tuberculosis testing, and a mental health screening.  The mayor says children stay an average of 35 days while awaiting a hearing before an immigration magistrate and do not attend local schools.  More information on this can be found on a page on the City’s website,www.syrgov.net/unaccompaniedchildren

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