Monday, June 30, 2008

News on Plan Merida from Ambassador Tony Garza

June 30, 2008

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

Today President Bush approved funding for a supplemental budget bill that will include the Merida Initiative, along with a wide range of other national priorities such as military spending and natural disaster relief. The Merida Initiative will significantly enhance ongoing cooperation and coordination between the United States and Mexico aimed at disrupting the trafficking of narcotics, money, people and arms across the border and combating the criminal organizations operating in both countries. Our commitment to confronting these transnational criminal organizations is not new. What is new is the level of this commitment with Mexico. The Merida Initiative represents a new era of cooperation which will amplify and strengthen existing law enforcement cooperation, intelligence sharing, and training programs. It will also provide new equipment for Mexican forces to use to better confront the common threat of drug trafficking and other transnational organized crime.

Click on the following to read more in English: http://mexico.usembassy.gov/newsletter/enA080630.html
---------------------------
30 de junio de 2008

Estimados amigos y colegas:

El Presidente Bush aprobó hoy la Ley Presupuestal Suplementaria en la que se incluye el financiamiento de la Iniciativa Mérida, así como una amplia gama de prioridades nacionales de importancia crítica, tales como el presupuesto militar y fondos para ayuda en caso de desastres naturales. La Iniciativa Mérida ampliará de manera significativa la cooperación y coordinación que existe entre los Estados Unidos y México, con el fin de atacar el tráfico de drogas, dinero, personas y armas a través de nuestra frontera, y de combatir a las organizaciones criminales que operan en ambos países. Nuestro compromiso de hacer frente a estas organizaciones delictivas transnacionales no es nuevo. Lo que es nuevo es el nivel de nuestro compromiso con México. La Iniciativa Mérida representa una nueva era de cooperación que ampliará y fortalecerá los programas vigentes de cooperación en materia de aplicación de la ley, intercambio de datos de inteligencia y capacitación a elementos de las fuerzas del orden público. También proporcionará equipo nuevo para que las fuerzas mexicanas hagan frente de mejor manera a la amenaza común del narcotráfico y de otros tipos de crimen organizado transnacional.

Dé clic a continuación para seguir leyendo en español: http://mexico.usembassy.gov/newsletter/snA080630.html

Friday, June 27, 2008

Alianza por la educación, una apuesta de largo plazo: Vázquez Mota

Wilbert Torre / Corresponsal
El Universal
Washington
Viernes 27 de junio de 2008


Destacan expertos del Banco Mundial que el verdadero desafío del programa del Gobierno mexicano consistirá en que la sociedad tome consciencia de que hay cosas que deben corregirse para que se incorpore a la reforma educativa

Al presentar la Alianza para la Calidad de la Educación al Banco Mundial y el Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo, la secretaria Josefina Vázquez Mota dijo que se trata de una "apuesta de transformación seria y de largo plazo" que pretende trascender gobiernos y voluntades personales, y anunció que los recortes presupuestales no afectarán a las principales instituciones de enseñanza superior en México.

"Acabo de recibir un informe que confirma que los presupuestos de la UNAM, la UAM y el Politécnico Nacional no serán recortados un solo centavo", declaró Vázquez Mota. Uno de los temas principales de una larga jornada de discusiones en el Banco Mundial fue justamente en qué áreas de la educación deben invertir más los países de América Latina.

En un evento que reunió a dirigentes sindicales, diputados y representantes de la sociedad civil mexicana, expertos del Banco Mundial recibieron con elogios la Alianza presentada hace un mes, pero advirtieron que el verdadero desafío consistirá en que la sociedad tome consciencia de que hay cosas que deben corregirse y movilizarla para que se incorpore a la reforma.

"México no se quedará retrasado en la apuesta y el esfuerzo educativo y para ello es necesario que cada actor participe. Todos los actores se vuelven indispensables", dijo Vázquez Mota. Anunció que el 18 de agosto los nuevos profesores serán seleccionados en concursos de oposición y que se colocarán informes públicos en todas las escuelas sobre el nivel de cada plantel.

Al término del primero de dos días de deliberaciones, a todos pareció quedarles claro que la Alianza es apenas el principio de un deseo que enfrentará obstáculos: conquistas sindicales obsoletas; acuerdos al margen de la ley suscritos con el magisterio; maestros cuya capacidad y nivel de preparación están en entredicho; padres de familia que piensan que sus hijos van muy bien en la escuela cuando las estadísticas internacionales dicen lo contrario.

"Es complicado convencer a la sociedad de que existe un problema" dijo Manuel Moreno, experto del Banco Mundial -. Citó que un estudio reciente en Nuevo León mostró que los niños de segundo grado de primaria no sabían leer y los padres de familia estaban felices. "El 70 por ciento de los padres de América Latina están satisfechos con el desempeño de los niños, a pesar de que las mediciones internacionales dicen lo contrario".

Eduardo Vélez, también del Banco Mundial, dijo que es clave el monitoreo del sistema y citó como ejemplo a Cuba: "Tiene docentes muy profesionales y un sistema efectivo de rendición de cuentas: Si un maestro no funciona, se le da una segunda oportunidad y si vuelve a fallar se le manda a cortar caña o como burócrata del Banco Mundial". Jeffrey Puryear, otro experto del organismo, dijo que si en Cuba el sindicato de maestros ha funcionado es porque no tiene ningún tipo de poder.

Arturo Sarukhan, embajador de México en Washington, dijo que en la Alianza será clave el motor de todo sistema educativo, el maestro. Moreno, del Banco Mundial, remarcó la idea cambiando el contenido de un famoso aforismo empleado por la campaña de Bill Clinton en 1992: "Es el maestro, estúpidos", dijo.

Rafael Ochoa, secretario general del SNTE, dijo que uno de los filos delicados de la Alianza será la situación de miles de maestros que fueron contratados por décadas al margen de la ley, fuera de nómina, con fines populistas. "Tendremos que sentarnos a platicar que vamos a hacer con ellos. ¿Los vamos a echar a la calle?"



© Queda expresamente prohibida la republicación o redistribución, parcial o total, de todos los contenidos de EL UNIVERSAL

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Inside Bush's Billion-Dollar Immigration Gulag

By Tom Barry, Americas Policy Program
Posted on June 23, 2008, Printed on June 26, 2008
http://www.alternet.org/story/89102/

The next administration will face an out-of-control immigration enforcement regime that consigns immigrants to a labyrinth of unregulated detention centers, jails, and prisons throughout the country.

While the scope of the detention and imprisonment of immigrants has been greatly expanded by the Bush administration, the problem of unregulated immigrant detention is not new. In the 1990s, increased immigrant detention and federal prison overcrowding led to an outsourcing boom. Instead of being held in federal prisons and detention centers, arrested immigrants increasingly were held in local, state, and privately owned jails and prisons.

But the boom in contracted detention beds for federal detainees produced a series of scandals that alarmed many in Congress. Gross human rights abuses and millions of dollars in overcharges persuaded Congress, prodded by immigrant and prisoner advocates, to create the Office of the Federal Detention Trustee (OFDT) in the Justice Department (DOJ) in 2000. The newly established OFDT, which opened in September 2001, was authorized to coordinate all outsourcing of federal detainees and oversee the implementation of the new detention standards adopted in 2000.

But the onset of the war on terrorism and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security in March 2003 sidelined OFDT's coordination mission. Instead of centralizing detention operations for federal detainees held in non-federal facilities, detention operations have quickly become less coordinated, more diffuse, and riddled with abuse.

More Beds for Immigrants
The Bush administration is fulfilling its promise that there will be sufficient prison beds for all the immigrants caught in the Department of Homeland Security's widening immigrant round-up. In the detention business, bed is a euphemism for jail space.

Supported by generous budget increases for its immigration initiatives, Congress and the Bush administration have approved funding for a major increase in beds for immigrants—as long as they're locked up. Homeland Security has created a national network of bed providers in county, state, and federal facilities. Similarly, the Justice Department has seen major increases in its budget for housing and transporting immigrants through its U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) and OFDT.

While the current focus on immigrants as security threats started in the immediate aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, the drive to increase the number of beds for arrested immigrants began in earnest in 2004. At the insistence of immigration restrictionists like Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) and the Immigration Reform Caucus, the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 contained an authorization for an additional 40,000 beds to accommodate immigrants held for immigration violations.

Two years later in a major speech on immigration policy on May 15, 2006, President Bush assured the nation that the U.S. government was well on the way to securing the U.S. southern border, noting, "We've expanded the number of beds in our detention facilities, and we will continue to add more."

In an August 2006 visit to the U.S.-Mexico border to promote his immigration policy, President Bush repeated his determination to increase jail space for immigrants. "Step 1," he said, "is to add detention beds."

Today, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the DHS agency responsible for immigrant "detention and removal," has 32,000 beds at its immediate disposition, with another 1,000 scheduled to come on line in 2009. In 2008 ICE is spending $1.7 billion on immigrant detention, in addition to the $700 million for enforcement and removal operations.

DHS says it can guarantee the availability of a bed for any immigrant in its care. At the onset of the immigration crackdown two years ago, ICE dubbed its promise to find a detention center or prison bed for all arrested immigrants "Operation Reservation Guaranteed." That operation has been subsumed into ICE's Detention Operations Coordination Center.

The Justice Department has a similar initiative to ensure that the U.S. Marshals Service has beds available for detainees—about 180,000 a year, of whom more than 30% are held on immigration charges.

Navigating the Bed Labyrinth
Prior to Sept. 11, 2001 the federal government already knew that it had a bed problem. But new divisions in the federal immigration bureaucracy and the Bush administration's crackdown on immigration have aggravated the difficulties of finding beds for the increasing number of immigrants under federal custody.

Before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks the immigrant bed problem was largely confined to the Department of Justice, which then housed the government's two main immigration agencies, Border Patrol and Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS).

Back then DOJ was a one-stop shop for immigration enforcement. In addition to border security and immigration investigation and processing, DOJ also adjudicated immigration cases through the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). Conveniently, the U.S. Marshals Service, another DOJ agency, has been responsible for the "security and transportation" of arrested immigrants.

The pre-9/11 challenge of providing enough beds for the immigrants held either by the Border Patrol, INS, or the USMS was part of the larger national problem of having too many prisoners and too few prison beds. It was a problem that took hold in the 1970s with the onset of the war on drugs and new tough sentencing standards. Over the last three decades, increased inflows of unauthorized immigrants also taxed the government's capacity to detain or jail unauthorized immigrants or ones accused of crimes.

Rather than expanding the federal government's own detention centers and prisons, DOJ started diversifying operations and outsourcing its detainees. Increasingly, DOJ began sending immigrants to county and state jails. Also brought into this patchwork system of immigrant detention were private prison firms that are hurriedly expanding their operations to accommodate the upsurge in arrested immigrants.

As part of the Reagan administration's privatization policy, DOJ encouraged the private sector to move into the detention center and prison business. In fact, the global private prison industry got its start in 1983 when DOJ encouraged a group of Republican entrepreneurs to open a private detention center for arrested immigrants in Houston. That immigrant detention pilot project formed the foundation of what is now the world's largest prison corporation: Corrections Corporation of America.

The steady rise of the illegal immigrant population in the 1990s strained DOJ's capacity to oversee the expanding patchwork quilt of bed providers. Compounding the problem in the mid-1990s was new legislation that set off a process that continues today of criminalizing immigration violations. Immigration violations that had been considered administrative infractions were increasingly regarded as aggravated felonies—raising the number of immigrants subject to "mandatory detention."

The problem before Sept. 11 was not so much finding beds for arrested immigrants but in managing the sprawling, patched-together detention system. No one office was managing bed-rental contracts, setting standards and prices, and negotiating with all the private firms and local governments offering detention beds. What's more, there were no uniform standards and no enforceable regulations for detention center conditions and the treatment of detainees.

According to a DOJ audit: "The lack of standards led to inconsistent practices, confusion among detention providers, and lack of accountability. Also, these facilities were not adequately monitored to ensure safe, secure, and humane conditions of confinement. Standards for inspections were inconsistent, inspection staff lacked subject matter expertise, and no system existed to ensure corrective action and follow-up."

In what has turned out to be an ill-fated attempt to manage and regulate the ad hoc network of bed providers, Congress authorized the creation of the Office of the Federal Detention Trustee within the DOJ bureaucracy. According to the OFDT, Congress "determined that one coordinated effort was necessary to achieve detention efficiencies, effectiveness, and operational synergies across departmental and agency lines."

OFDT, which continues to boast that it is the only government agency that coordinates "detention activities for DOJ and ICE," has never come close to fulfilling its mission. Mismanagement—including overlooked over-charging by county jails—has sullied its reputation, and Homeland Security has ignored its feeble attempts to coordinate detention operations.

Finding a Bed for the Night

Imagine yourself as a detained immigrant.

An ICE raid at your workplace or home suddenly rips you away from your family, friends, and job. Who, you may ask, is arresting me? Who is taking me where?

Imagine yourself an immigrant—not necessarily because of any feelings of sympathy or solidarity but as a way to better understand the Kafka-esque nightmare that America's immigration system has become.

You may be able to count on a bed for the night, but it's likely that you won't know who the innkeeper is.

Unlike a national hotel chain each with its distinctive logo and guarantee of the same quality of service no matter where you stay, the federal government's chain of detention beds comprises literally thousands of "service providers," each with its own insignia, each with its own standard of service.

Once in ICE's custody, where you will spend the night will depend on the occupancy rates of the providers. This will be determined by ICE's new Detention Operations Coordination Center (DOCC). ICE boasts: "By monitoring bedspace and operations constantly, the DOCC ensures that no alien amenable to removal proceedings is released from ICE custody."

There's always room in the inn for immigrants. That's essentially the guarantee offered by the Department of Homeland Security.

Fewer than two of 10 arrested immigrants actually gets a bed at one of the eight ICE processing centers. More than 50% of ICE detainees are contracted out to county jails. But it may be difficult to determine who your host is since in many cases all the jailers sport the logos of the private firms that own and operate these local jails. ICE contracts with more than 350 county and state jails, all of which have a different approach to handling immigrants and many of which don't have bilingual staff.

You may find that your custodians are not government employees at all but are hired hands of the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), GEO Group, Management and Training Corporation (MTC), or Cornell Companies. In addition to the subcontracts these companies have with local jails that have contracted out bed space to ICE, CCA and GEO own and operate seven of the 15 ICE processing centers.

From being hauled out of one part of corporate America, where you may have worked as a meatpacker or a hotel service worker, you could find yourself transported in Homeland Security buses to another corporate plant identified by its CCA, GEO, MTC, or Cornell logos and flags but surrounded by high fences with razor-sharp concertina wire.

It's increasingly likely, though, that you be transferred to another detention booking system run by the DOJ's Office of the Detention Trustee. As part of the immigration crackdown, the federal government is increasingly prosecuting immigration violations. Which means that after initial processing and detention within ICE's network, you will be turned over to DOJ's own chain of detention centers, jails, and prisons.

Like ICE, the Justice Department's OFDT has developed its own booking system to handle the recent increase in the federal detainee population, spurred mainly by the arrests of immigrants. It's called the Detention Services Network (DSNetwork), which OFDT describes as providing "One-stop shopping" for detention facilities and services.

OFDT says it aims to "avoid duplication of effort and cost of detention activities by competing agencies. OFDT focuses on process and infrastructure improvements. OFDT has developed a strategic approach that crosses organizations to meet the increasing demands on the detention community of aggressive immigration and law enforcement initiatives. In an effort to meld the many requirements of the USMS, the BOP [Bureau of Prisons], and ICE, OFDT is implementing a national detention strategy characterized and driven by an enterprise perspective [OFDT's emphasis]."

What OFDT doesn't like to mention is that ICE rarely coordinates with DSNetwork or other OFDT services. As an internal DOJ report noted, "ICE infrequently uses OFDT's services. According to the OFDT, it has no leverage to force ICE to use its services."

This "enterprise perspective" means outsourcing. Although federal detainees have historically been placed in federal prisons while they await trial, most are now contracted out either to 1,600 local and state jails or directly to private "contract facilities." As OFDT notes, "This saturation of state and local facilities forces an increased reliance on private facilities that are historically higher in cost."

Although OFDT says it has a cross-organizational view of detention, in practice it manages only DOJ detainees—the nearly 20,000 immigrants held every day in USMS custody during the time after they have been charged and until they have been convicted or acquitted. According to OFDT, "The number of persons held [by USMS] for immigration offenses is growing at a faster rate than other offense categories."

If found guilty of an immigration violation—such as entering or re-entering the country without proper documents or giving an employer a false Social Security number—you will be sentenced to a jail term (oftentimes in addition to the time you have already been detained). However, given that federal prisons are fully booked, you will likely be transferred yet again by the USMS to another contracted bed in one of a myriad of private prisons or local jails. It's all part of the booming enterprise of detaining and imprisoning immigrants.

Problems with Enterprise Detention
The new hard line on immigration, says ICE, aims to "restore integrity" to the immigration system. But in the name of enforcing the law, the federal government is increasingly obliged to outsource immigrant detainees to detention centers, jails, and prisons.

While there is now a list of detention system standards, these weak standards are not enforceable. In this enterprise system of immigrant detention, there is little or no quality control. As a result, the abuses that plagued the system before 2001 have continued and deepened.

"DHS is one of the largest jailers in the world," said Paromita Shah, Associate Director of the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, which filed suit last month against DHS. "But it behaves like a lawless local sheriff. The refusal to adopt comprehensive, binding regulations has contributed to a system in which thousands of immigration detainees are routinely denied necessary medical care, visitation, legal materials, or functioning telephones."

The oversight by DHS and DOJ of their thousands of contracting jailors is minimal. Aside from dropping off and picking up the detainees, the main interaction with its outsourcing partners is the negotiation of per diem rates for bed rentals.

The uncoordinated, unregulated detention system came under congressional and public criticism in the 1990s. But the creation of a new federal bureaucracy in the form of the Office of the Detention Trustee failed to solve the problem. Instead, the problems of the detention system for immigrants have been compounded by the creation of a new immigration bureaucracy and the immigration crackdown of the last couple of years.

Both DOJ and Homeland Security boast of the increased ability to find beds for immigration violators, but they provide no guarantee for the conditions at their "service providers."

It's time that Congress again review this unregulated detention system for which it is ultimately responsible. Immigration policy should regulate sustainable inflows of immigrants, not manage a penal bureaucracy. Nor should immigrant detention be regarded as just another enterprise that can be outsourced.

Tom Barry is a senior analyst with the Americas Policy Program (www.americaspolicy.org) of the Center for International Policy.

© 2008 Americas Policy Program All rights reserved.
View this story online at: http://www.alternet.org/story/89102/

Switching languages can also switch personality: study

This is the most interesting detail for me: this research found that people who are bicultural switched frames more quickly and easily than people who are bilingual but living in one culture.

Frame-switching does seem more dramatic for me in the U.S. than in Mexico where I currently live. It's more smooth. But then it also depends on who you're talking to. This is all so complex. -
Angela



Switching languages can also switch personality: study
Tue Jun 24, 11:33 AM ET

People who are bicultural and speak two languages may unconsciously change their personality when they switch languages, according to a U.S. study.

Researchers David Luna from Baruch College and Torsten Ringberg and Laura A. Peracchio from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee studied groups of Hispanic women, all of whom were bilingual, but with varying degrees of cultural identification.

They found significant changes in self perception or "frame-shifting" in bicultural participants -- women who participate in both Latino and Anglo culture.

"Language can be a cue that activates different culture-specific frames," the researchers said in a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research.

While frame-shifting has been studied before, they said this research found that people who are bicultural switched frames more quickly and easily than people who are bilingual but living in one culture.

The researchers said the women classified themselves as more assertive when they spoke Spanish than when they spoke English.

"In the Spanish-language sessions, informants perceived females as more self-sufficient and extroverted," they said.

In one of the studies, a group of bilingual U.S. Hispanic women viewed advertisements that featured women in different scenarios. The participants saw the ads in one language - English or Spanish - and then, six months later, they viewed the same ads in the other language.

Their perceptions of themselves and of the women in the ads shifted depending on the language.

"One respondent, for example, saw an ad's main character as a risk-taking, independent woman in the Spanish version of the ad, but as a hopeless, lonely, confused woman in the English version," said the researchers.

Copyright © 2008 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Copyright © 2008 Yahoo All rights reserved.Copyright/

Crea Gobierno seguro de vida para migrantes

Los comentarios que siguen despues son interesantes. -Dra. Valenzuela

FECHA DE PUBLICACIÓN: 26/JUNIO/2008

Crea Gobierno seguro de vida para migrantes

REDACCIÓN / BENJAMÍN PACHECO LÓPEZ

Los migrantes de Guanajuato podrán comprar un seguro de vida en las farmacias del Instituto de Seguridad Social del Estado de Guanajuato (ISSEG) para que, en caso de fallecimiento, su cuerpo sea repatriado a México sin causar gastos extras a sus familiares.

El gobernador Juan Manuel Oliva Ramírez detalló ayer el programa durante la presentación de las nuevas credenciales de afiliación del ISSEG, que tendrán un formato similar a las tarjetas bancarias.

Dijo que dicho seguro costará mil 100 pesos y tendrá una vigencia de 12 meses; refirió que la cantidad será doble en caso de muerte accidental.

“Por muerte natural, la suma asegurada es de 100 mil pesos; por muerte accidental, la suma es de 100 mil pesos que se pagará en adición a la suma correspondiente a la de muerte natural”, especificó.

Otros conceptos que incluye el seguro son repatriación de restos a México y asesoría en trámites.

Juan Carlos López Ramírez, secretario de Desarrollo Social y Humano, declaró que mediante empresas aseguradoras como Intercam y AIG, se facilitó el seguro de vida.

“A través del Consejo del Migrante Emprendedor se diseñó un producto accesible y eficiente, con una cobertura clara y de fácil acceso a la población, que se adapta a la situación legal del migrante”, dijo.

Los seguros podrán ser comprados en más de 200 establecimientos del ISSEG en la entidad, y también podrán adquirirlo ciudadanos que no sean migrantes mexicanos.

PERIÓDICO A.M.
Envíe sus comentarios a webmaster@am.com.mx, © 1999-2005 Cia. Periodística Meridiano S.A. de C.V.

Esta nota puede encontrarla en:
http://www.am.com.mx/nota.aspx?ID=208974

Como buenos Mexicanos, a quien le gusta hablar de la muerte ? y menos si estamos fuera de nuestro terruno. ojala que se mueran los demas, pero no los que somos Mexicanos. si me muero adios a la vida al estilo ranchero dice la cancion. en otras palabras: si me muero, mundo ahí te quedas y hagan la coperacha para que me regresen a mi pueblo y les digo esto porque en estos casos de causa de muerte el gobierno mexicano no ayuda a sus compatriotas.

Enviado el 6/24/2008 7:25:00 PM
Enviado por Sr. Cervantes. 5395

Los migrantes que mueren del otro lado o en su intento por pasar ,deben tener el derecho de de ser traidos a su pais y que el gobierno se haga cargo de los gastos despues de todo ¿no es el gobierno quien tiene la culpa de que se vayan por falta de oportunidades, sueldos miserables y precios altos en lo que consumimos?
Enviado el 6/24/2008 4:04:00 PM
Enviado por marcela castro 5338

Si no fuera trágico, sería cómico. ¿no sería mejor invertir en fuentes de trabajo para evitar la migración? ¿legislar a favor de una sociedad productiva?, lástima que yo voté por usted, señor "gobernador"...
Enviado el 6/24/2008 3:05:00 PM
Enviado por Edd 5323

No haya la forma el Gobierno de Guanajuato, para despojar a los inmigrantes del dinero que ganan con trabajo duro en el extranjero. Los inmigrantes no necesitan esa basura de Seguros, ni dada por el estilo que provenga del Corrupto y Putrefacto Gobierno Mexicano.

Enviado el 6/24/2008 9:35:00 AM
Enviado por Martin Montmora 5180

Indagan muerte de joven leonés

FECHA DE PUBLICACIÓN: 26/JUNIO/2008

Indagan muerte de joven leonés
EDMUNDO MEZA


El migrante leonés que falleció en el desierto de Falfurrias, Texas, murió de deshidratación y de un paro cardiaco que la causó una pastilla que le dio un “pollero”.

“Se tiene conocimiento, por la información recabada y según el acta de defunción que perdió la vida por un ataque por deshidratación. Pero según la versión de un sobreviviente, un joven que lo acompañaba, el ataque se lo ocasionó una pastilla que le dio el ‘coyote’, es muy probable que haya sido una droga”, informó ayer, Francisco López Santacruz, secretario técnico de atención a migrantes del municipio de León.

La víctima es José Fernando Pérez López, de 37 años, quien la semana pasada emigró junto con José de Jesús Castillejos, de 20 años, ambos residían en la colonia Valle de Jerez.

De acuerdo con el testimonio que dio el joven, al sufrir el ataque, el “pollero” los abandonó en el desierto. Castillejos pidió auxilio en un rancho, pero no encontró a nadie.

Tras varias llamadas al 911, le contestó un operador quien envió un cuerpo de paramédicos, pero su localización fue tardía. El migrante ya había fallecido.

“Lo más seguro es que le dio una pastilla para aguantar, es la versión que dio el muchacho, que le iba a dar agua, y se empezó a convulsionar, ya cuando le dieron el agua, ya no aguantó, y el ‘pollero’ los dejó ahí”, explicó López Santacruz.

El funcionario dijo que se les recomienda a los migrantes no aceptar nada de lo que el ‘pollero’ les dé, ni agua ni alimentos, porque a veces los drogan para asaltarlos.

“Es inhumano, pero ellos son gente despiadada, que ven a las personas como un tráfico, como un negocio. Les decimos siempre a los que se van a Estados Unidos, que no se tomen nada, que mejor coman unos granitos de sal, para aguantar la sed”, mencionó.

Sobre el estado de descomposición, y el mal embalsamamiento con que les fue entregado el cuerpo a los deudos, culpó a las autoridades de Estados Unidos.

“Es problema del embalsamador, que aunque embalsamen los cuerpos vienen mal, los mejores embalsamadores son mexicanos, nos han tocado hace algunos años, dos casos así (…), si los familiares quieren presentar una queja, seremos gestores para que se haga con la Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores”, dijo López Santacruz.

Para que el cuerpo aguantara a ser velado por sus familiares, colocaron ventiladores y le pusieron hielo al féretro.

PERIÓDICO A.M.
Envíe sus comentarios a webmaster@am.com.mx, © 1999-2005 Cia. Periodística Meridiano S.A. de C.V.

Esta nota puede encontrarla en:
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Emigra 40% a EUA

Los comentarios de la gente incluidos abajo son muy interesantes. -Angela

LOCAL

26/JUNIO/2008
Trabaja en EU casi medio Guanajuato

REDACCIÓN / BENJAMÍN PACHECO LÓPEZ


Alrededor del 40% de las personas nacidas en Guanajuato labora actualmente como migrante en el extranjero, principalmente en Estados Unidos, cifra que representa casi la mitad de la población en la entidad.
Jorge Estrada Palero, director general del Instituto de Seguridad Social del Estado de Guanajuato (ISSEG), refirió la cifra tras la presentación del Seguro de Vida del Migrante.

“Hoy en día, tenemos en el extranjero más de dos millones de guanajuatenses”.

“En el estado de Guanajuato tenemos cinco millones de habitantes, y estamos hablando que un 40% adicional se encuentra en el otro lado, que fueron a jugarse la vida en busca de mejores condiciones de trabajo”, comentó.

Dijo que los paisanos se encuentran distribuidos en toda la Unión Americana y no sólo en un estado, pero que destacan en California, Texas y Nueva York.

Sobre el programa de remesas (envío de dinero a México), compartió que por medio del ISSEG ingresan al País alrededor de 200 millones de pesos al año, dato que representa alrededor de 20 millones de dólares que se mueven a través del sistema.

“En 2003, en el programa de remesas, fueron realizadas 800 operaciones por el canal del ISSEG; el año pasado hicimos más de 45 mil y este año van a superar las 50 mil operaciones”, mencionó.

Estrada Palero consideró que estos migrantes serán los primeros clientes en utilizar el seguro en las poco más de 160 farmacias en el estado de Guanajuato.

El pronóstico es que durante el primer año venderán alrededor de 10 mil seguros; agregó que también pueden utilizar este seguro personas que no necesariamente tengan el estatus de migrantes en el extranjero.

“Puede ser en varios sentidos: si alguien en estas comunidades, que no tiene acceso a seguros de vida y quiere comprarle un seguro de vida a personas que viven ahí, también lo pueden hacer”, aclaró.

“Principalmente el producto está dirigido a migrantes, pero es un producto más amplio que puede ser beneficiado a otra parte de la sociedad”, finalizó.

-----------
Claro Francisco Cortes, se ve que tienes motivos para estar en contra del gobierno, si seguramente ni educación te dieron, Gobierno va con "B" de BURRO!
Enviado el 6/24/2008 11:55:00 PM
Enviado por Fernando 5436

Todo esto claro es debido a los demagogos y populistas de derecha que tenemos por gobernantes de Fox, Romero Hicks, y Juan Manuel Oliva, quienes viven como Reyes a costa de los Guanajuateses
Enviado el 6/24/2008 8:57:00 PM

Enviado por Moisés Villegas Hernández 5415
Lamentablemente nuestra tierra de oportunidades no nos deja otra opcion que venirnos a trabajar a EU. Ojala algun dia esto cambie y podamos regresar a nuestra querida tierra.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 7:18:00 PM
Enviado por anonimo 5393

Esta cantidad suena muy exagerada: “Hoy en día, tenemos en el extranjero más de dos millones de guanajuatenses”. Sería importante que el Sr. Jorge Estrada Palero (ISSEG)especifique de dónde salen estos números, para así haya más credibilidad para sus proyecciones.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 5:47:00 PM
Enviado por Joaco 5366

Esta cifra es el resultado del gran trabajo de los gobiernos panistas en la entidad. Desde el bocòn de Fox, pasando por el caldo de haba Romero Hicks y aterrizando en el lider yunque, Juan Manuel Oliva, al gober ignorante. Como veràn, estos roedores salieron peores que sus antecesores priìstas. Que sirva de ejemplo para los estados que buscan empanizarse.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 4:19:00 PM
Enviado por Ing. Josè Salomè Reynoso 5342

Que tristeza, cuantas familias desintegradas y el gobierno haciendo negocio con nuestra desgracia.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 2:49:00 PM
Enviado por José Luis 5317

Cálmate paisa es mejor tener el seguro para no andar despues pidiendo coperacha para mandar nuestros restos a nuestra tierra querida
Enviado el 6/24/2008 1:45:00 PM
Enviado por rodolfo 5299

Mi apoyo absoluto a las palabras del Sr. Francisco Cortes.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 11:50:00 AM
Enviado por angie 5240

Infelices desgraciados hijos de su tal por cual, primero crean las condiciones para obligarnos a abandonar el estado y abandonar a nuestras familias, y ahora asta quieren hacer negocio con esa situation. Si hubiera justicia divina esta bola de cerdos (el govierno de el estado) ya se los ubiera tragado la tierra. En cuanto asu seguro que se lo metan ya saben donde, yo no les confiaria ni mi sombra mucho menos mi salud o la de mi familia.
Enviado el 6/24/2008 10:18:00 AM
Enviado por francisco Cortes 51

The Role of Schools in the English Language Learner Achievement Gap

New REPORT on English language learners

Pew Hispanic Center pewhispanic.org
The Role of Schools in the English Language Learner Achievement Gap


by Rick Fry

Students designated as English language learners (ELL) tend to go to public schools with low standardized test scores. However, these low levels of assessed proficiency are not solely attributable to poor achievement by ELL students. These same schools report poor achievement by other major student groups as well, and have a set of characteristics associated generally with poor standardized test performance--such as high student-teacher ratios, high student enrollments and high levels of students who live in poverty or near poverty. When ELL students are not isolated in these low-achieving schools, their gap in test score results is considerably narrower.

Copyright © 2008 Pew Hispanic Center
1615 L Street, NW Suite 700 Washington, DC 20036-5610
p 202.419.3600 f 202.419.3608

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Just released report: Hispanics Rising II: An Overview of the Growing Power of America’s Hispanic CommunityMay 30, 2008


(this is an updated version of our 2007 Report)

Hispanics Rising Executive Summary

Fueled by huge waves of recent immigration from throughout the Americas, the rapid growth of the Hispanic community
is one of the great American demographic stories of the 21st century. At 15% of the US population today, Hispanics are
now America’s largest “minority” group, and are projected to be 29% of all those living in the United States by 2050. A
majority of Hispanic adults in the United States today are immigrants.
Recognizing that it will be hard to build a 21st century political majority without this fast-growing electorate, Hispanics
have become one of the most volatile and contested swing voting blocks in American politics. George W. Bush’s success
with this community was critical to both of his election victories.
In 2005, the immigration debate introduced a new dynamic in this electorate. The GOP rejected the more enlightened
approach to Hispanics championed by the Bush family, and adopted a much more anti-immigrant, anti-Hispanic
approach. This approach was instrumental in fueling the massive immigration rallies in the spring of 2006, and swinging
Hispanics significantly to the Democrats and increasing their turnout in the 2006 elections.
Initial data from 2008 show that these trends continue unabated. Hispanics have voted in record numbers, tripling their
turnout from the 2004 primaries and increasing their share of the vote in the Democratic primaries by 66%. Seventyeight
percent of Hispanics who voted in the presidential primaries this year have voted Democratic.
This emergence of a new, highly energized and pro-Democratic Hispanic electorate could have an enormous impact on
the presidential election. At least 4 of the most important battleground states have significant Hispanic populations.
U.S. Sen. John McCain is not in a strong position to change this dynamic, given that he abandoned his support for
immigration reform and arguably “betrayed” the Hispanic community. While U.S. Sen. Barack Obama was a bit slow in
making a strong appeal to the Hispanic community, he has made great strides in recent weeks.

Citizens Sue ICE

Buenas noticias... -Angela

Citizens sue after detentions, immigration raids

By Emily Bazar, USA TODAY

LOS ANGELES - Nitin Dhopade, the chief financial officer for Micro Solutions Enterprises, was headed toward the accounting department on the afternoon of Feb. 7 to deliver checks he had just signed. Suddenly, he says, he encountered armed men and women wearing bulletproof vests and uniforms branded with "ICE," which stands for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Dhopade, 47, says he and 30 other administrative workers for the Van Nuys, Calif., company, which recycles used toner and ink cartridges, were marched down a stairwell lined by officers. The workers were ordered against a wall and told not to touch anything or use their cellphones. "There was no way you could leave. You were definitely detained," he says. "None of us were in handcuffs, but there was no way you could say 'I'm leaving.' "

That marked the beginning of a surprise raid that would result in the arrests of 138 suspected illegal immigrants, about one-fifth of MSE's workforce. Also swept up in the same raid were more than 100 U.S. citizens and legal residents, including Dhopade, a naturalized U.S. citizen from India. They say they were illegally detained at the factory for an hour when ICE agents blocked the doors and interrogated them, forbidding them to leave or go to the bathroom without an escort.

Whether their brief detention was a mere inconvenience or a flagrant violation of their constitutional rights is the subject of a growing debate that seems likely to be resolved in federal court. Immigration officials, charged with enforcing the law against the estimated 12 million undocumented foreigners in the USA, are mounting more raids at slaughterhouses, restaurants and factories.

Increasingly, U.S. citizens and legal residents who work alongside illegal immigrants are being detained and interrogated, too. And some, such as Dhopade, are filing claims or lawsuits against the government.

Dhopade says he was a victim of racial profiling by ICE. An ICE agent questioned him about his immigration status and his ability to speak English "because of my skin color," he says. "None of the white folks in the office . that I know of were asked for proof of citizenship. To be asked for proof of citizenship, in this country, it's an insult. This is the United States of America. This country does not require that."

In other immigration raids, citizens and legal, permanent residents have been taken to jail. Jesus Garcia, a former Texas poultry worker, was handcuffed and spent more than 30 hours in ICE custody this year, part of that time in jail. Two co-workers, both citizens, also were arrested. No charges were filed against them.

In April, the Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law, a public interest law firm here, filed claims for damages on behalf of 114 MSE employees, all citizens or legal permanent residents, also called green-card holders. The claims allege that they were subjected to "false imprisonment" and "detention without justification" and seek $5,000 each in damages from the federal government.

The lawsuits and claims against the government are part of a strategy by immigration lawyers to halt or change workplace raids. Peter Schey, president and executive director of the center, acknowledges that "we're hoping the prospect of thousands of U.S. citizens over time filing claims for damages against the United States government might cause (ICE) to reconsider how these raids are conducted."

"You cannot in this country engage in group detentions of large numbers of people because you think a smaller number within the larger group has done something wrong," Schey says. At the Van Nuys plant, ICE "created a powerful atmosphere of fear and intimidation. People felt like they had been taken hostage."

The rationale for the raids

Julie Myers, the Department of Homeland Security's assistant secretary for ICE, says federal law, Supreme Court decisions and search warrants give ICE the authority to enter workplaces to question "all the people inside," including citizens. She declines to discuss the MSE case, citing the ongoing investigation. But she says ICE agents work fast to separate legal workers from suspected illegal ones.

"When we go in, a lot of people are pretending to be U.S. citizens, and then there are some people who are," she says. "Our goal is to make sure we work as quickly and efficiently as we can so that U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents are free to go."

The stepped-up enforcement protects U.S. workers, she says. "We're trying to create a culture of compliance . so that businesses would start to have incentives to hire only people who are legally entitled to work here."

Workplace arrests by ICE in 2007 were 10 times what they were in 2002. Last year, the agency charged 863 people with criminal violations, such as identity theft, and 4,077 for allegedly being in the country illegally. In 2002, ICE made 25 criminal and 485 immigration-related arrests. Workers arrested on criminal charges face jail time; those accused of being in the country illegally are subject to deportation.

So far this year, ICE has made 850 criminal arrests and detained 2,900 people on immigration violations.

ICE has three primary targets, Myers says: workers who steal the identities of U.S. citizens, such as those who use someone else's Social Security number to gain employment; work sites such as airports and naval bases, which could be particularly vulnerable to terrorist threats; and what Myers calls "egregious employers" - those who knowingly hire illegal workers.

Barbara Coe, chairwoman of the California Coalition for Immigration Reform, says raids "are providing the incentive for at least some of these illegal aliens to get out of here before they are deported. I don't think there are enough raids. There should be more." She says she's sorry legal residents are sometimes questioned during raids but believes ICE needs time to determine who is here legally.

So does Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington. "It's not the end of the world," he says of citizens who are detained. "These people were briefly inconvenienced. Too bad."

'My heart was racing'

Denise Shippy, nine months pregnant the day of the MSE raid, says it was more than an inconvenience.

She had planned to take off that afternoon for parent-teacher conferences and a doctor's appointment. But Shippy, 30, needed to train a receptionist to fill in for her while she was on maternity leave, so she took her two children to the office with her. The raid occurred as she settled Cassidy, 7, and Ricky, 9, into the mailroom for lunch.

As she left the mailroom, Shippy found the lobby filled with ICE agents, and she, the children and co-workers were herded in there. When Shippy tried to respond to an e-mail, she says, one ICE agent said, "Stop typing."

"My rights were violated," Shippy says. "I am a citizen of this United States. I was born here. I'm not who they're looking for. I wasn't allowed to leave. . I couldn't go anywhere and couldn't do anything. Neither could my children."

Although she was upset, she tried to calm her kids, she says. She needed to use the restroom, but held off because she didn't want an agent to accompany her.

"I didn't want to scare the heck out of my kids," she says. "I was trying to be cool and calm for my children. My heart was racing."

At one point, agents started escorting handcuffed workers - suspected illegal immigrants - from the factory floor out the front door. Her children asked why the workers were handcuffed, what they had done wrong and what would happen to them, she says.

"That was when I started getting angry," she says. "My kids should not have had to watch these things. They saw people being led out in handcuffs. These are people who are recognizable to my children."

Shippy, who gave birth to a boy on Feb. 19, returned to work June 9 and says she still feels justified in filing a claim.

"I'm not some money-hungry person," she says. "This is something I'm pretty passionate about. It shouldn't have happened the way it did."

Debate over the law

As long as ICE has a warrant to enter a workplace, Myers says, agents can conduct what she calls a "survey" to determine the legal status of "anyone within the premises."

She cites a 1984 Supreme Court ruling that said factory surveys during immigration raids don't amount to an unconstitutional detention or seizure of those being questioned, even U.S. citizens.

In its ruling, however, the Supreme Court emphasized that the employees in the factory were not prevented from moving around, continuing to work or leaving. The current raids are different from those the Supreme Court approved, Schey says.

ICE can question workers as long as the interaction is voluntary, "but what they're doing (now) is not that," he says, because workers think they have no choice except to answer questions - which may incriminate those here illegally.

Many workers caught in raids don't know they're not obligated to respond, regardless of their immigration status, says Kevin Johnson, dean of the University of California-Davis, law school. ICE "can ask people questions. That doesn't mean people have to respond," he says.

Schey suspects ICE is using search warrants as a pretext to enter workplaces and then arrest as many people as it can to get publicity. "It's in effect a group detention," he says, "not supported by probable cause, . not supported by any law."

Michael Wishnie, a professor at Yale Law School, argues that ICE cannot legally detain or arrest anyone without reasonable suspicion that a specific person broke the law. People should not be detained simply because "they work in the same factory as the person" for whom ICE has warrant, he says.

Kris Kobach, who teaches law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, counters that police sometimes have to detain a large group to find the lawbreakers among them. He cites, as an example, police looking for two drug dealers in a house where 10 people live. In such a drug raid, "police will reasonably close the doors to the house and detain everybody," he says.

The factory's owners

No fines or charges have been levied against MSE or its managers.

Brothers Avi and Yoel Wazana, immigrants from Israel, started the company in 1994. Last year, net revenue was $95 million. At MSE's headquarters, a 225,000-square-foot building in Van Nuys, workers clean, disassemble, reassemble and test old printer cartridges. Before the raid, MSE employed about 700 people here.

Myers declined to say what prompted the raid. However, ICE began auditing the company in May 2007, focusing on "I-9 forms," which employers use to document employees' legal status. As part of the I-9 process, employers must inspect at least two documents that show identity and legal status, including U.S. passports, Social Security cards or green cards.

MSE was "in compliance with I-9 requirements," says Schey, who also represents the company. "If some of the documents workers presented were fraudulent," MSE has "no way of determining that."

The next month, the company voluntarily began using a government database to verify the status of new hires, he says. Then the company didn't hear from the government for months, Schey says.

"They expected a letter," he says. "Instead, on Feb. 7, ICE comes in like gangbusters."

About 100 ICE agents raided the factory between 3:30 and 4 p.m., says Nora Preciado, an attorney with the National Immigration Law Center. Armed with a federal search warrant, they arrested 130 workers from Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras and other countries on suspicion of being in the country illegally. ICE also had arrest warrants for eight others, who were picked up at their homes or the factory. These eight, identified by ICE during the earlier check of documents, face criminal charges for making false claims of U.S. citizenship or presenting false documents.

Five people arrested in the raids have been deported, ICE says. The others remain, some in detention, some not, while fighting their deportation orders in court.

Avi Wazana did not comment on the cases against his former employees or the methods MSE used to check their immigration status. In an e-mail after the raid, however, he told some of his customers that "MSE . has rejected hundreds (possibly more) of applicants . due to improper documentation."

The ACLU and other legal aid groups sued ICE, saying the detained MSE workers should have been allowed access to attorneys when they reported for interviews after the raid. U.S. District Court Judge George Wu agreed, and ordered ICE to stop interviewing workers. ICE has since allowed lawyers to be present at any interview with MSE workers.

One of the workers interviewed without an attorney present was Maria, a 39-year-old Pacoima resident who worked at MSE for eight years. She asked that her last name not to be used, on the advice of her attorney. "I felt like I had to answer" questions from ICE, she says. "I didn't know about my rights."

Maria was a supervisor in charge of eight line workers. She says she entered the USA illegally 15 years ago from Mexico so she could give her children a better education. One of her three children, a 14-year-old girl, is a U.S. citizen.

Maria says she'll fight to remain in the USA because she doesn't want to be separated from her family, especially her daughter. The girl's father, Maria's longtime partner, is a U.S. citizen and will care for their daughter if Maria is deported.

"She's not going to leave," Maria says of the girl, an eighth-grader. "This is her country."

Jailed 'over a mistake'

ICE's raids foster discrimination, says Domingo Garcia, attorney for the League of United Latin American Citizens. "There's a lot of racial profiling. . If you look like a Hispanic, you're detained or arrested."

He says he plans to file a class-action, civil rights lawsuit on behalf of legal workers detained in raids, including Jesus Garcia, 27, a green-card holder from Mount Pleasant, Texas. Domingo Garcia says he will ask the court to prohibit ICE from conducting raids until it changes its policies to prevent racial profiling.

ICE agents went to Jesus Garcia's home on April 16 in conjunction with a raid on a nearby Pilgrim's Pride poultry processing plant, where he worked marinating chicken meat. Garcia, from Mexico, has been a legal permanent resident for a year and a half. When about 10 ICE agents and local sheriff's deputies knocked on his door, they told him he was using the wrong Social Security number, says his wife, Olivia Garcia, a U.S. citizen.

Though Garcia showed the agents his green card, they handcuffed him and jailed him. He was released a day and a half later after agents told him he wasn't the person they wanted, he says. He had spent the night in jail. "He said it was pretty bad," Olivia says. "People were crying and screaming."

Jesus Garcia, who has since left Pilgrim's Pride for another job, says the mishap cost him three days of work. "I worked hard to get my residency," he says. "And to take me to jail just over a mistake?"


Adrian Rodriguez
LULAC VP for the South West
Cell 214-478-5921
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UN NUEVO VIDEO MUESTRA LA RELACIÓN ENTRE LOS GRUPOS ANTI-INMIGRANTES Y SUPREMACISTAS

Llame a:
Laura Anduze(202) 785-1560
PARA DIFUSIÓN INMEDIATA
25 de junio del 2008

UN NUEVO VIDEO MUESTRA LA RELACIÓN ENTRE LOS GRUPOS ANTI-INMIGRANTES Y SUPREMACISTAS

Washington, DC–“¿Qué tal si todos los grupos líderes anti-inmigrantes fuesen fundados por la misma persona, la misma organización y estuviesen ligados a la supremacía blanca?”. Así comienza un nuevo vídeo que presentó el Consejo Nacional de la Raza el cual detalla los orígenes comunes de muchos de los grupos líderes anti-inmigrantes que son considerados “líderes” en el país, y como éstos están atados a grupos supremacistas. “Detrás del Velo”, narrado por Heidi Beirich del Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC)–principal monitor de grupos racistas de la nación –se basa en la investigación sobre organizaciones tales como Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), el Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), NumbersUSA, y el Social Contract Press.
“Tiene que haber un debate sobre la reforma de inmigración”, dice Janet Murguía, presidenta del NCLR, “estamos ansiosos por tenerlo. Pero hasta ahora, la retórica ha sido sobre el odio y no ha sido sobre política pública o una reforma como tal. No se puede generar política pública basada en la demonización de un grupo sobre otro. Tiene que erradicarse el odio”.

“Detrás del Velo”, es el tercero de tres vídeos producidos por el Consejo Nacional de La Raza como parte de la campaña “Podemos Parar el Odio” (We Can Stop the Hate) que pretende exigir a los grupos racistas que abandonen sus prácticas de odio y el uso de insultos y amenazas racistas para desviar la atención del debate de inmigración y menospreciar a la comunidad hispana. Así como las otras organizaciones destacadas en los otros vídeos, ni el Anti-Defamation League ("Code Words of Hate") ni el Leadership Conference on Civil Rights ("America's Immigration Legacy"), ni el SPLC tiene ningún interés en el debate sobre la reforma de inmigración. Por ello, su participación en esta campaña reafirma la importancia de la misma. Los tres vídeos se encuentran en la página de Internet de NCLR: www.WeCanStopTheHate.org.

Varios testimonios de expertos en el vídeo demuestran como los grupos extremistas están diseñados para coexistir con aquellos que se reconocen públicamente en los medios y aparentar ser “moderados” en vez de extremistas.

“El sistema completo”, dice Beirich del SPLC en su narración, “por un lado, complace a los extremistas porque sabe que se unirán, respaldarán, financiarán, asistirán a sus eventos y por el otro, usa grupos como FAIR para presentar una cara más moderada que aparente estar desconectada de aquellos grupos extremistas, pero que al final, no lo está”. “La mayoría de la gente, dice Murguía, “no se da cuenta que estos grupos tienen un origen en común y que sus agendas son sumamente sospechosas”.

Beirich también describe como el dramático crecimiento de los grupos racistas en los últimos ocho años puede atribuirse al nuevo enfoque y a las tendencias hacia una retórica anti-inmigrante. Según el SPLC, el número de grupos racistas en contra de los latinos ha subido a un 48% desde el año 2000.

“El factor propulsor a todo esto”, dice Beirich, “es que cada uno de estos grupos recluta sus miembros al compás de los tambores del tema de la inmigración. Esto es lo que está impulsando el crecimiento de los grupos racistas. Eso y nada más”.


All Content © 2008 NCLR. All Rights Reserved   

THE PRICE OF A MEXICAN PART 2

COLUMN OF THE AMERICAS
APRIL 13, 2008 (Media release upon receipt)
BY ROBERTO DR. CINTLI RODRIGUEZ
THE PRICE OF A MEXICAN PART 2

In early December, a Mexican family is pulled over by a Tucson police
officer who promptly calls immigration officers to the scene. In the
meantime, a passenger, Miriam Aviles-Reyes, goes into early labor on
the street. While her husband is deported, she is taken to a hospital.
There, an immigration agent prods her to "push." Outraged, she demands
that he leave the hospital room. After he leaves, she gives birth, and
is subsequently ordered to leave the country by the end of the month.
Appeals to allow her and her newborn to keep their doctor appointments
are denied.

Not coincidentally, her departure was set to coincide one day before a
new draconian anti-immigrant law (HB 2779) in Arizona went into
effect.

As abhorrent as this traumatically induced birth was, she is actually
one of the "lucky" ones. This is a part of the country in which since
the mid-1990s, some 5,000 migrants from Mexico, Central and South
America have died attempting to cross inhospitable deserts and
mountains for a chance to work in this country. Many others die in
horrific crashes as smugglers increasingly attempt to evade "the
migra." Some are killed by rogue agents, whereas many women are
sexually assaulted. Few perpetrators are ever convicted. This is also
minutemen vigilante country. It is where migrants get blamed for the
failure of politicians to pass humane immigration agreements. As a
result, migrants continue to die and millions of dollars continue to
be wasted to erect walls of fear and hate along the southern border.

Similar to the more than 1,000 laws that have recently passed
nationwide, the Arizona law panders to those that scapegoat Mexicans
for the nation's problems. They also conflate immigration enforcement
with the "war on terror" and the need to "protect the homeland." This
state law severely punishes employers for hiring undocumented
immigrants. Not unexpectedly, along with hate crimes, reports of
employment harassment and discrimination are on the rise.

Down the highway, under the guise of crime suppression, Maricopa
County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has gone wild, initiating massive dragnet
raids that target Mexicans, resembling a modern version of "Indian
Removal." Similar raids are taking place around the country, though
not against Canadians or Europeans, etc (nor should they). Nowadays,
there are special holding facilities for immigrant children and
families (T.D. Hutto Res. Ctr, Taylor, TX) – run by the for-profit
Correction Corporation of America (CCA). There are also expedited
immigration courts on military bases (Davis Monthan Air Force Base)
with the objective of criminalizing en masse as many migrants as
possible. Also profiting from such kangaroo courts is CCA.

The entire country is going through a convulsion, fueled by fears over
who belongs and who doesn't. Mexicans have gone from being "others" to
enemies. Extremists want them all deported – regardless of their legal
status. Yet even some "progressives" see them as but part of a
subservient class. Yet, there is hope.

At the recent annual banquet in Tucson held by the Coalicion de
Derechos Humanos organization, I approach a woman with a cane.
Sometimes I see her walking with the aid of two canes. I ask Raquel
Rubio Goldsmith, an immigration rights veteran and the director of the
University of Arizona's Binational Migration Institute, how she
maintains her sanity in this environment.

She says few words. It's her eyes that tell the story. Her eyes do not
well up nor is there a sign of anger. Instead they reflect
exasperation, not with right-wingers, but with the complacent middle.
Thousands of migrants die and people just go on with their lives,
unmoved to action.

At this banquet, Gerald Lenoir, head of the Black Alliance for Just
Immigration, delivers the keynote address and along with it hope as he
links the historic struggle of the African American community with the
struggle for the dignity of migrants – peoples who are nowadays
viewed as less than human. By his very presence, both he and Derechos
Humanos show a different way.

After a subsequent conference (No Vale Nada la Vida? – Is life not
worth anything?) in which death on the border is the focus, I again
ask Rubio-Goldsmith how she maintains her sanity amid the
indifference. The exasperation she feels also extends to the media,
she confides: "me dan tanta rabia" (the media infuriate me), she says.

What I really want to ask her is: What indeed is the price of a
Mexican? A few years back, a Texas court determined it was $6,000. In
today's climate, I think we all know the answer.

(c) Column of the Americas 2008

Rodriguez can be contacted at: XColumn@gmail.com or
Column of the Americas, PO BOX 85476, Tucson, AZ 85754
http://web.mac.com/columnoftheamericas/iWeb/Site/Welcome.html

For updates regarding immigration related issues, go to:
http://www.derechoshumanosaz.net

The Immigration Policy Center Issues a Press Release in Support of

Immigration Policy Center (IPC)
Immigration Policy Center | 1331 G St., NW, Suite 200 | Washington |
DC | 20005
...providing factual information about immigration and immigrants in
the United States.

PRESS RELEASE
June 19, 2008

Dead-Ends and Deportation for America's Youth
2 Million Reasons to Find a Solution


As the school year ends, millions of children throughout the United
States are looking forward to summer vacations. Many will soon be
packing their bags as they head off to summer camp or to their first
year of college. But others are not so lucky. Some children are
packing all of their belongings and preparing to leave what may be the
only home they have ever known, as the U.S. government prepares to
expel them to countries they may not even remember. Others with the
potential for higher education and a professional career are resigned
to a life that's underachieving and underground.

* Arthur Mkoyan was due to be deported by the end of this month, just
after graduating from Bullard High School in Fresno, California. The
17-year-old valedictorian was to take his 4.0 grade point average, his
acceptance letter to the University of California at Davis, and his
talent back to Armenia –- a country he has not seen since the age of
two. His deportation was delayed after Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
introduced a private bill on his behalf in Congress on June 10. But
whether or not he will be allowed to remain in the United States, and
for how long, remains unknown ("Senator tries to keep valedictorian
from deportation, " CNN.com, June 11, 2008).

* Santiago Cordero graduated from Postville High School in Iowa on
May 25, 2008. In addition to starting the school's first soccer team,
his participation in varsity football and volunteer programs was
applauded by the Superintendent. Despite an immigration raid that tore
his mother from their family, Cordero graduated in the top ten of his
class. But because Santiago is undocumented, he faces an uncertain
future ("Raid mars future for 3 graduating today from Postville," Des
Moines Register, May 25, 2008).

* Laura just graduated from high school in Charlotte, North Carolina,
with a 4.0 grade point average and dreams of becoming an engineer. But
then she learned that Central Piedmont Community College, which she
planned to attend for two years before switching to a four-year
college, is no longer admitting undocumented students such as herself.
Now Laura's plans for college and a career are in limbo ("Yearning to
learn, but rule says no," Charlotte Observer, June 17, 2008).

As lawmakers keep trying to "deport their way out" of a dysfunctional
immigration system that has fueled a growing undocumented population,
they would do well to consider the cases of Arthur, Santiago, Laura,
and approximately 1.8 million others, whose deportation would be
traumatic not only for the students themselves, but for the American
workforce as a whole. An IPC fact sheet, Dreams Deferred: The Cost of
Ignoring Undocumented Students, details the financial and emotional
costs of deporting these students and wasting human resources that are
vital to our nation's future. The fact sheet is drawn from a larger
IPC report, Wasted Talent and Broken Dreams: The Lost Potential of
Undocumented Students, by Roberto Gonzales:

Lost Potential: Children account for 1.8 million (15 percent) of the
roughly 12 million undocumented immigrants currently in the United
States. Though born abroad, these children primarily identify with
this country. Many were brought at such a young age that they have
attended most of their K-12 education here. Roughly 65,000
undocumented students –who have lived in the United States for at
least five years– graduate from high school each year, but only an
estimated 5-10 percent go on to college, which means that the
potential of these honor students, valedictorians, aspiring teachers,
and engineers goes unrealized.

Lost Tax Dollars: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS),
workers with a bachelor's degree earned an average of $962 per week in
2006 (as opposed to $419 per week for workers without a degree). The
Department of Labor found that the wages of immigrants who legalized
their status under the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986
(IRCA) increased by about 15 percent after only five years. Given the
opportunity, undocumented students will improve their education, work
in higher-paying jobs, and pay more in taxes.

Lost Workers: The BLS identified 15 occupations expected to grow at
least twice as fast as the national average between 2004 and 2014,
nine of which require at least an Associate's degree, and four of
which, in 2005, had a significantly greater share of immigrant workers
than native-born workers; 46 percent of medical scientists, 35 percent
of computer engineers, and 20 percent of postsecondary teachers are
immigrants.

States Step In: So far, ten states have passed laws permitting
undocumented students to qualify for in-state tuition if they attended
and graduated from in-state high schools. New Mexico and Texas also
allow undocumented students to compete for financial aid. The
experience of these states reveals that the number of undocumented
students is far too small to deprive their native-born counterparts of
college admission slots or financial aid.

Contact:

Angela Kelley, Director
202.507.7511 (office)
202.441.5589 (cell)
akelley@ailf. org

Michele Waslin, Senior Policy Analyst
202.507.7521 (office)
mwaslin@ailf. org

Friday, June 20, 2008

How Do You Say Justice in Mixteco?

HOW DO YOU SAY JUSTICE IN MIXTECO?
By David Bacon
TruthOut

http://www.truthout.org/article/how-do-you-say-justice-mixteco


FRESNO, CA (6/15/08) -- Erasto Vasquez was surprised to see a forklift appear one morning outside his trailer near the corner of East and Springfield, two small rural roads deep in the grapevines ten miles southwest of Fresno. He and his neighbors pleaded with the driver, but to no avail. The machine uprooted the fence Vasquez had built around his home, and left it smashed in the dirt. Then the forklift's metal tines lifted the side of one trailer high into the air. It groaned and tipped over, with a family's possessions still inside.

"We were scared," Vasquez remembers. "I felt it shouldn't be happening, that it showed a complete lack of respect. But who was there to speak for us?"

Eight farm worker families lived in this tiny "colonia," or settlement, on the ranch of Marjorie Bowen. Their rented trailers weren't in great shape. Cracks around the windows let in rain and constant dust, which carried with it all the fertilizer and chemicals used to kill insects on the nearby vines. Some trailers had holes in the floors. None had heat in the winter or air conditioning in the summer.

Still, they were home. Vasquez had lived in his trailer for 17 years. His youngest daughter, Edith, was born while the family lived there. By the time the forklift appeared she had started middle school, while her brother Jaime was in high school and her sister Soila had graduated. "Señora Bowen was a nice lady, and even though we had to make whatever repairs the trailers needed ourselves, sometimes she'd wait 3 or 4 months for the rent, if we hadn't been working," Vasquez says. The families had labored in her vines for years.

But Marjorie Bowen died in 2005. Her daughter, Patricia Mechling, inherited the ranch and wanted the trailers removed before selling it. That September, she sent the families letters, giving them 60 days to clear out. It was the picking season, however, when there are many more workers in the San Joaquin Valley than places for them all to live. Vasquez' family couldn't immediately find another home, nor could the others. They asked for an extension. Mechling refused.

At the last moment, the farm workers actually did find someone to speak for them - Irma Luna, a community outreach worker at California Rural Legal Assistance. They had their first meeting at CRLA's Fresno office that November, before the forklift arrived. Luna and De La Cruz informed their clients and Mechling's attorney, James Vallis, of the legal requirements that must be followed before carrying out evictions. Vallis denies that Luna had notified him she had met with Vasquez. On the following Monday, however, November 14, 2005, the forklift cut short the legal process.

"Destroying the trailers in front of the families that lived in them wasn't a reasonable or legal way to evict them," Luna says. "The families didn't really understand their rights in the legal process. Many speak only Mixteco [an indigenous language in Oaxaca, a state in southern Mexico]."

CRLA eventually won a settlement providing some compensation for destroyed belongings, rent abatement, withheld security deposits, and emotional suffering. The incident illustrates the ongoing need for legal services for some of the state's poorest families. However the case also highlights the challenges facing legal service providers as demographics change in a new generation of California farm workers. CRLA has created an innovative program to meet some of these challenges. But the agency's staff and indigenous community leaders agree that a broader reality check and a rethinking of U.S. immigration policy are also needed. In the meantime, CRLA itself, never the growers' darling, is in yet another battle to protect its farm worker clients and assure its own survival.


De La Cruz and the Fresno law firm Wagner & Jones, who provided pro
bono co-counseling, filed suit against Mechling in August of 2006, alleging she'd violated section 789.3 of the Civil Code, by committing prohibited acts to get the families to move out, and section 1940.2, by making threats. De La Cruz also alleged that the eviction was in retaliation for complaints the families had made over substandard living conditions in the trailers. Attorney Vallis called the suit "a shakedown." It was settled the day before trial for $55,500, and Mechling has since sold the property.

Seven of the eight families come from the same tiny town, San Miguel Cuevas, in the mountains of Oaxaca, an area they poetically call the "land of the clouds." And while speaking only Mixteco created great difficulty for many in understanding the proceedings, their strong cultural traditions also gave them a sense of responsibility towards each other. During the period before the case was settled, Vasquez was elected in absentia as San Miguel's "sindico," a position responsible for taking care of injured people, and making funeral arrangements for those who die. Election meant he had to return to Mexico for a year to fulfill this duty, called a "tequio."

When Vasquez was required to give a deposition, however, Luna (who hails from the same town) appealed to his sense of collective responsibility. Vasquez paid $600, at a time when he wasn't working, to travel back to Fresno. "I wanted the landlord and lawyer to pay for what they'd done, so that they'd feel what we felt," he explains. "I was also the one who convinced the other families that we had to do something. When it was my turn to give a deposition, I felt responsible to them, and to the case."

An increasing number of farm workers in California share those traditions. Rufino Dominguez, coordinator of the Binational Front of Indigenous Organizations, says there are about 500,000 indigenous people from Oaxaca living in the U.S., 300,000 in California alone. The FIOB, with chapters in both Mexico and the U.S., defines indigenous communities as those sharing common languages and cultures that existed in the Americas before the Spanish conquest. Indigenous communities exist throughout the Americas - Oaxaca alone is home to 23.

While farm workers 20 and 30 years ago came from parts of Mexico with a larger Spanish presence, migrants today come increasingly from indigenous communities. "There are no jobs, and NAFTA [the North American Free Trade Agreement] made the price of corn so low that it's not economically possible to plant a crop anymore," Dominguez asserts. "We come to the U.S. to work because we can't get a price for our product at home. There's no alternative." Economic changes like NAFTA are now uprooting and displacing Mexicans in Mexico's most remote areas, where people still speak languages that were old when Columbus arrived in the Americas.

In 2006 spreading poverty, and the lack of a program to create jobs and raise living standards, ignited months of civil conflict in Oaxaca, in which strikes and demonstrations were met with repression by an unpopular government. According to Leoncio Vasquez, an FIOB activist in Fresno (and a distant relative of Erasto), "the lack of human rights itself is a factor contributing to migration from Oaxaca and Mexico, since it closes off our ability to call for any change."

Dominguez estimates that 75% of the indigenous migrants from Oaxaca and other states in southern Mexico arrive in California with no immigration visas, an increase from 50% a decade ago. "A few of us benefited from the immigration amnesty in 1986, but not many," he explains. "The reality is there are no visas available in Mexico to come here, so even though it's harder, more expensive and more dangerous than ever to cross the border, many people still come because their need is so great. Neither the U.S. nor the Mexican government will look at the root cause of migration."


Providing legal services to communities of indigenous farm workers in California is complicated by the large number of people who lack legal immigration status, and by restrictions on some $7.2 million it receives from the Legal Services Corporation in Washington, DC. "Immigration status has always been a criteria for eligibility," says Jose Padilla, CRLA's executive director, "but until 1996 the law didn't restrict the use of other funds for that purpose. In 96, however, Congress said that so long as we receive even $1 in Federal funding, we can't represent undocumented people. The same legislation also prohibited us from collecting attorney fees, and filing class actions."

CRLA was particularly affected by the 1996 legislation because it had started reaching out to indigenous communities just a few years before. In the late 1980s the agency opened an office in Oceanside, just north of San Diego. "We found people living in the bushes, in open country, ravines and canyons," Padilla recalls. "We began to understand that the people living in these extreme conditions came from a different part of Mexico. Although we've always had bilingual outreach workers who speak English and Spanish, here we found people with an indigenous language and culture we weren't prepared to serve."

At the same time indigenous migrants were critical of CRLA for not responding to their needs. A network of Mixtec and Zapotec organizations, that eventually came together to form the FIOB in 1992, met with Claudia Smith, who headed the Oceanside office, and eventually with Padilla and other CRLA staff. As a result of those meetings, CRLA decided to hire its first indigenous staff member, Rufino Dominguez.

"We began to work on the basic problems of our communities," Dominguez recalls. "When we went out to the fields we often found no bathrooms or drinking water. Some were working with the short-handled hoe [prohibited by state law], or weren't getting paid and had no rest breaks. Many people were living outside, or in unclean housing in bad condition. So we held workshops in homes and fields, and got on the radio."

At first Dominguez, and a second Mixtec-speaking outreach worker, Arturo Gonzalez, traveled all over the state educating people about their rights in Mixteco, the language spoken by the largest number of indigenous farm workers. As word spread, complaints began to surface. At the Griffith Ives Ranch in Ventura County, two Mixtecos tunneled under fences that held laborers in virtual peonage, going first to the Mexican consulate, and then to CRLA. With the assistance of Munger, Tolles & Olson in Los Angeles, CRLA lawyers filed suit in federal court alleging enslavement as well as violations of the Agricultural Worker Protection Act and the RICO Act. Eventually Edwin Ives pleaded guilty to RICO charges in a related criminal prosecution, in the first federal organized crime conviction in a civil rights case. Some 300 workers shared $1.5 million in back wages.

Outside of Fresno, a group of 32 Mixtec families were found living in a trailer park located on an old toxic waste disposal site. Dominguez began the investigation of their situation, which was completed by Irma Luna when she was also hired as indigenous outreach workers. Following negotiations between CRLA, Chevron Corp. and the Environmental Protection Agency, the area was declared a superfund site and Chevron paid to relocate the families in new homes in a community called Casa San Miguel-named after their hometown in Oaxaca.

In October of 2003, another indigenous outreach worker, Fausto Sanchez, investigated the case of families exposed to chloropicrin, a toxic pesticide, as an onion field was sprayed near Weedpatch in October, 2003. The subsequent case and settlement required Sanchez to give 167 separate clients an ongoing understanding of a complex legal case in Mixteco for three years.

"Relations between CRLA and the FIOB were difficult at first, and some people said they didn't need us, or complained about our work," Dominguez says. "But we have a very close relationship now, and each of use recognizes the importance of the other." Dominguez left CRLA to become the FIOB's binational coordinator in 2001, and today CRLA has six Mixtec-speaking outreach workers, based in offices around the state. In addition to Luna and Sanchez, Jesus Estrada works in Santa Maria, Mario Herrera in Oceanside, and Lorenzo Oropeza in Santa Rosa. Some are active in the FIOB, and others aren't. Antonio Flores started a separate organization in Oxnard, the Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project. And last year CRLA hired Mariano Alvarez, the first worker from another important community, the Triquis.

"We respect our differences," Dominguez emphasizes, "because it's good for us. When we work together we have a greater impact." Alegria De La Cruz and Jeff Ponting, CRLA attorney in Oxnard, are co-coordinators of CRLA's Indigenous Farmworker Project. "We've become an example to other legal aid organizations," Ponting says. "We employ more indigenous people than the state and federal governments combined, which indicates their lack of commitment to providing services to a growing and important community."


Predictably, cases generated by this work get CRLA into trouble with growers. "There are always employers who will not respect the basic labor rights of their workforce to minimum wage, overtime, or rest periods," Padilla says. "We do more employment work-about 16 to 20 percent of our cases-than 99 percent of legal service organizations, where the average is 2 percent."

In 1996, the Republican-led Congress imposed new restrictions on legal services providers funded by the nonprofit Legal Services Corporation (LSC) in Washington, D.C. Recipients could not initiate or participate in class actions, collect attorneys' fees from adverse parties, or represent undocumented people. CRLA found private counsel to take over more than 100 active cases, including a significant number of class actions. CRLA now cooperates much more extensively with private lawyers-far beyond the legal requirement to use 12.5 percent of its resources to do so. Because private attorneys may collect fees, cooperation means that opponents face serious financial penalties, while the poorest workers don't have to pay for legal representation with a percentage of recovered wages. And private lawyers, unlike CRLA, are not barred from representing undocumented clients.

"Our relationships with private counsel are critical," says Padilla. "Not only can they represent individuals where we are barred, they also can ensure that farm workers and the poor continue to have access to quality litigation. So long as CRLA doesn't directly represent any ineligible immigrants, it can participate in litigation that might benefit both eligible and ineligible case members."

By keeping strictly to the letter of the regulations, CRLA held its critics at bay for more than a decade. Early in 2000, however, CRLA began filing complaints against powerful dairy interests in the Central Valley, settling one of many cases on behalf of dairy workers for $475,000. According to Padilla, in late 2000 the first of several federal investigations of CRLA began, requested by Congressmen from rural California.

In 2006 the LSC issued a report, requested by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Visalia), finding "substantial evidence that CRLA has violated federal law" by engaging in conduct prohibited by funding restrictions. A year later Kirt West, outgoing LSC inspector general, issued a subpoena demanding 33 months of data on 39,000 clients to determine if CRLA "disproportionately focuses its resources on farm worker and Latino work." CRLA refused to comply with the subpoena, Padilla says, "because California law protects clients and their confidentiality." The case has been fully briefed and awaits either the scheduling of a hearing or a decision.

"The Office of Inspector General can make no conceivable use of the 39,000 client names and their spouse names it is seeking," says Marty Glick, a partner at San Francisco's Howard Rice Nemerovski Canady Falk & Rabkin who represents CRLA. "It refuses to say why it wants or needs them. It is also demanding access to privileged and work-product memoranda and documents. One has to wonder what the purpose is. Why is the effort to give people redress for the failure to pay legal wages or overtime so controversial?"

Last year the LSC put CRLA's funding on a month-to-month basis, but in 2008 relaxed restrictions to a six-month cycle. "But there's no end in sight," Padilla says. "The message we get is that CRLA should change the way it advocates for low-wage and Latino workers. We're being punished for protecting our clients."


To indigenous communities, however, the prohibition on representing undocumented people is a greater problem than the fight with the dairies. "That prohibition doesn't change the conditions that uproot our communities and turn us into migrants," Dominguez says. "But ranchers know there's no one to defend us. People decide not to file complaints because they're afraid, and bosses sometimes use undocumented status to threaten people if they try. In some places, just walking on the streets is dangerous if you have no papers."

Some members of Congress argue that more enforcement of employer sanctions (the provision of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act that bars employers from hiring workers without valid immigration status) would stop the abuse. Workers without documents would be forced to leave the country, the logic goes, and growers would be forced to hire other, less vulnerable workers. "That won't stop migration either," Dominguez says, "since it doesn't deal with why people come."

"We know the law," Padilla says, "but whatever workforce is in the fields should have basic rights." CRLA and most labor unions today say it would be better to devote more resources to enforcing labor standards for all workers. "Otherwise, wages will be depressed in a race to the bottom, since if one grower has an advantage, others will seek the same thing."

Others in Congress-and some California growers-call for relaxing the requirements on guest worker visas. Under the current H2-A program for agriculture, growers can recruit workers on temporary visas for less than a year. These workers must remain employed by the contractor who recruits them. Although there are minimum wage and housing requirements, a recent report by the Southern Poverty Law Center, Close to Slavery: Guestworker Programs in the United States, documents extensive abuses under the system.

"These workers don't have labor rights or benefits," Dominguez charges. "It's like slavery. If workers don't get paid or they're cheated, they can't do anything." The Department of Labor allows H2-A contractors to maintain lists of workers eligible and ineligible for rehire - in effect, blacklists.

"The governments of both Mexico and the U.S. are dependent on the cheap labor of Mexicans. They don't say so openly, but they are," Dominguez concludes. "What would improve our situation is legal status for the people already here, and greater availability of visas based on family reunification." The current immigration preference system set up by the 1965 Immigration Act places a priority on the ability of citizens and legal residents to petition for their family members abroad, rather than treating migrants simply as a low-priced labor supply. "Legalization and more visas would resolve a lot of problems - not all, but it would be a big step," he says. "Walls won't stop migration, but decent wages and investing money in creating jobs in our countries of origin would decrease the pressure forcing us to leave home."
Meanwhile, Erasto Vasquez says, "it's important to have someone like Irma."

For more articles and images on immigration, see http://dbacon.igc.org/Imgrants/imgrants.htm

Coming in September, 2008, from Beacon Press:
Illegal People -- How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants
http://www.beacon.org/productdetails.cfm?PC=2002

Obama y Inmigración

El objetivo de esta entrevista de 20 minutos con el candidato era ver qué
tanto sabía sobre los hispanos en Estados Unidos y sobre América Latina. Y,
sin duda, Obama había hecho las tareas.

Afirmó que una de las primeras cosas que revisaría en caso de llegar a la
Casa Blanca sería el tema de las redadas y deportaciones de inmigrantes
indocumentados.

"No creo que aprehender a una madre, separarla de su hijo y deportarla, sin
medir las consecuencias, sea la forma norteamericana de hacer las cosas", dijo.

Obama no se quiso comprometer, como propuso Hillary Clinton, a enviar una
ley de reforma migratoria al Congreso durante sus primeros 100 días en la
Casa Blanca. No es realista cuando tiene que resolver primero la guerra en
Irak y la actual crisis económica. Sin embargo, señaló: "Lo que sí puedo
garantizar es una propuesta de reforma migratoria durante el primer año".



=======================================================


Miércoles 11 de junio de 2008
Entrevista con el candidato demócrata a la Presidencia de Estados Unidos:
Obama asegura que Hugo Chávez es "una amenaza, pero una amenaza manejable"



"Pudo haber estado involucrado en el apoyo a las FARC. Ese no es el tipo de
vecino que queremos", afirmó.
El senador sostuvo que si llega a la Casa Blanca "iniciaría conversaciones
con nuestros enemigos en Cuba y Venezuela".
Enfatizó que cuando "se termine la guerra en Irak", EE.UU. podrá volver a
enfocar su atención en Latinoamérica.

JORGE RAMOS

DENVER.ˆ Barack Obama llegó sin prisa y con la absoluta convicción de que
puede convertirse en el primer Presidente afroamericano en la historia de
Estados Unidos.

Yo lo había tratado en dos ocasiones anteriores, durante los debates
presidenciales, y, por lo tanto, ya no me sorprendió la impresión que me dio
de imperturbable, centrado, con un equilibrio interior.

Siempre da la sensación de que, antes de hablar, piensa todo una fracción de
segundo más que el resto de los políticos.

Hay políticos que ocultan sus debilidades y pretenden aparecer más fuertes
de lo que son. Obama no. Acepta su vulnerabilidad. Esa cualidad es la que le
permite conectar con la gente y con los votantes, sobre todo con los más
jóvenes.

Cuando le pregunté si su esposa, Michelle, creía que él corría algún peligro
en la campaña electoral, reconoció sin ningún titubeo el dominio que ella
tiene sobre él. "(Obviamente pienso que, en primer lugar, me) hubiera vetado
entrar en esta contienda por la presidencia", me dijo. "Pienso que todos
tenían preocupaciones en un principio, pero creo que la protección del
Servicio Secreto es excelente".

El objetivo de esta entrevista de 20 minutos con el candidato era ver qué
tanto sabía sobre los hispanos en Estados Unidos y sobre América Latina. Y,
sin duda, Obama había hecho las tareas.

Afirmó que una de las primeras cosas que revisaría en caso de llegar a la
Casa Blanca sería el tema de las redadas y deportaciones de inmigrantes
indocumentados.

"No creo que aprehender a una madre, separarla de su hijo y deportarla, sin
medir las consecuencias, sea la forma norteamericana de hacer las cosas", dijo.

Obama no se quiso comprometer, como propuso Hillary Clinton, a enviar una
ley de reforma migratoria al Congreso durante sus primeros 100 días en la
Casa Blanca. No es realista cuando tiene que resolver primero la guerra en
Irak y la actual crisis económica. Sin embargo, señaló: "Lo que sí puedo
garantizar es una propuesta de reforma migratoria durante el primer año".

Obama nunca ha viajado a América Latina en sus 46 años de edad. No apoya el
Tratado de Libre Comercio que negocian los gobiernos de Estados Unidos y
Colombia, y quizás suspendería o renegociaría el tratado comercial que
existe desde 1994 con México. Pero su política exterior para la región va
mucho más allá. "Hay una conexión natural entre Estados Unidos y América
Latina", comentó.

"Cuando se termine la guerra en Irak podremos volver a enfocar nuestra
atención (en Latinoamérica)", enfatizó. Y luego sacó una larga lista de las
cosas que quería hacer para no olvidar la región (como lo hizo el Presidente
George Bush, a partir del 11 de septiembre del 2001).

"Iniciaría conversaciones con nuestros enemigos en Cuba y Venezuela...
Cancelaría las restricciones de viaje a quienes tienen familiares en Cuba...
Quiero unirme a países como Brasil para buscar formas más limpias de
energía... Aprobé el Tratado de Libre Comercio con Perú, pero me opongo al
de Colombia hasta que tenga la confianza de que no están matando ahí a
líderes sindicales... hay que parar este tipo de actividades paramilitares",
afirmó Barack Obama.



-¿Y Hugo Chávez? ¿Es una amenaza para la seguridad nacional de Estados
Unidos y del resto del continente?

, le pregunté.

"Sí, creo que es una amenaza, pero una amenaza manejable", me contestó.
"Sabemos, por ejemplo, que pudo haber estado involucrado en el apoyo a las
FARC, perjudicando a un vecino. Ese no es el tipo de vecino que queremos.
Creo que es importante, a través de la Organización de Estados Americanos
(OEA) o de las Naciones Unidas (ONU), iniciar sanciones que digan que ese
comportamiento no es aceptable. Lo que he señalado es que debemos tener una
diplomacia directa con Venezuela y con todos los países del mundo".

Obama estudió español en la escuela secundaria ('high school') y durante dos
años en la universidad. "My spanish used to be OK", reconoció. Pero ahora lo
ha olvidado casi por completo. "Yo hablo un poquito español, pero no es very
good", se atrevió a decir en los dos idiomas.

Durante un reciente discurso sobre Cuba, sólo pronunció en español la
palabra "libertad". Y, ayudado por un teleprompter, acaba de grabar un
comercial en español para Puerto Rico.

En sus presentaciones suele soltar la frase "sí se puede". Pero Obama está
consciente de que decir mal unas palabritas en español no es suficiente para
ganar los diez millones de votantes latinos en las elecciones presidenciales
de noviembre y la buena voluntad de 550 millones de latinoamericanos.

Y para tratar de demostrar que sería un Presidente de acciones, quiere hacer
muy pronto su primer viaje a América Latina: "Me encantaría ir... antes de
noviembre".

Sería su primer paso hacia el sur.

"Hay zonas en las que el muro sí tiene sentido"

El escaso, ineficiente e improvisado esfuerzo de la campaña de Obama entre
los hispanos explicaría el magro resultado del senador entre esos votantes.
De hecho, la senadora Hillary Clinton obtuvo más votos de latinos que él
durante las primarias en todos los estados. Pero algunos creen que es por la
tensión que por décadas ha existido entre afroamericanos y latinos.

"Creo que sólo tiene que ver con el hecho de que los latinos me conocen
menos a mí que a la senadora Clinton", explicó. No saben, añadió, que ha
trabajado con la comunidad latina de Chicago, que apoyó los esfuerzos por
legalizar a los indocumentados y mejorar los programas educativos.

Pero lo que muchos sí saben es que, como senador, votó a favor de construir
700 millas (1.100 km) de un muro en la frontera con México para evitar la
inmigración ilegal.

-Si llega a ser Presidente, ¿pararía la construcción del muro?

"Quiero saber primero qué funciona..."

-¿Pero un muro funciona?

"No lo sé todavía".

-Pero usted ya votó construir el muro.

"Lo entiendo. Yo voté para iniciar la construcción del muro en ciertas áreas
de la frontera. Creo que hay algunas zonas en las que sí tiene sentido y
puede salvar vidas, si prevenimos que la gente cruce áreas desérticas que
son muy peligrosas". (Se calcula que unas 400 personas mueren en esa
frontera cada año.)

Un hispano muy influyente

Jorge Ramos

El autor de la entrevista es el conductor del Noticiero Univisión, que se ve
en Estados Unidos y 13 países de América Latina. El periodista mexicano ha
ganado varios premios Emmy y ha escrito seis libros, entre ellos "La Otra
Cara de América", "Atravesando Fronteras", "La Ola Latina", "Morir en el
Intento", y últimamente "El regalo del tiempo". Fue nombrado por la revista
"Time" como uno de los 25 hispanos más influyentes de Estados Unidos.

México es su prioridad

A pesar de que sus declaraciones sobre Venezuela y Cuba ("Dudo que Fidel
haya escrito su editorial más reciente. Creo que está muy enfermo para
hacerlo") son las que han generado más noticias, es la relación con México
la primera que Obama quiere reparar. "Es muy importante acercarse al
gobierno mexicano, de una manera en que esta administración (la de George W.
Bush) no lo ha hecho, para descubrir qué necesitan del otro lado de la
frontera para promover el desarrollo económico y la creación de empleos",
comentó. "Más trabajos allá significan menos indocumentados que vienen a
Estados Unidos", enfatizó.

En lo que va del año han muerto más de mil personas en México a consecuencia
de la guerra entre los carteles de la droga. Obama lo sabe y cree que el
consumo en Estados Unidos es, también, parte del problema. "No legalizaría
la marihuana, dijo, pero sí pienso que tenemos que reducir la cantidad (de
drogas) en EE.UU".



http://diario.elmercurio.com/2008/06/11/internacional/_portada/noticias/7469E6C0-3F6E-49F5-AC2B-08DDFFE50D4D.htm?id=%7B7469E6C0-3F6E-49F5-AC2B-08DDFFE50D4D


http://tinyurl.com/6yg6ad