NH's Immigration Story

Our 9 month series, New Hampshire's Immigration Story explored just that... the vast history of who came to New Hampshire, when they came, why they came, the challenges they faced once they landed on Granite State soil and the contributions that they brought to our state. The Exchange, Word of Mouth, and our News Department looked at the issue of immigration from its first arrivals to the newest refugees calling New Hampshire home.

We saw how immigration affects our economy, health care, education system, culture and our current system of law. We also looked at what's going on in New Hampshire today, as we uncovered the groups, societies and little known people who are making an impact all over the state.

Funding for NH's Immigration Story is brought to you in part by: New Hampshire Humanities Council, Norwin S. and Elizabeth N. Bean Foundation, The Gertrude Couch Trust

Courtesy of USCIS

Forty New Hampshire residents became official U.S. citizens on Thursday.

They took the oath of allegiance at a naturalization ceremony in Manchester organized by the U.S Citizen and Immigration Services.

The new citizens came originally from 24 different countries, from Somalia to Nepal to Canada.

They now live in 18 different towns across New Hampshire.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

 

A live storytelling event featuring New Hampshire refugees is coming to Manchester’s Palace Theater this Sunday.

The event, called “Suitcase Stories,” is organized by the International Institute of New England, which resettles refugees in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

Seven people from Manchester - mostly resettled refugees - will get on stage and tell their stories.

U.S. ICE

The ACLU of New Hampshire filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against the Exeter Police Department.

The suit alleges that officers arrested a man based on his suspected immigration status.  

Bashar Awawdeh is a Jordanian immigrant who married an American woman earlier this year. The case claims that Awawdeh, who speaks English and Arabic, helped officers translate statements of a convenience store co-worker who was suspected of simple assault.

New Hampshire agencies that settle refugees say they're concerned about the lower number of refugees to be admitted to the U.S. in 2019.

For fiscal year 2018, the cap was set at 45,000 refugees. For next fiscal year, that’s dropped to 30,000 refugees.

New census data released today show that New Hampshire continues to gain population from domestic migration, or people moving from other states to New Hampshire. New Hampshire is also gaining immigrants from other countries. All Things Considered host Peter Biello spoke with Ken Johnson, Senior Demographer at the Carsey School of Public Policy and Professor of Sociology at the University of New Hampshire.

Taylor Quimby

About a mile from downtown North Conway is a house. A sign out front says, “Residents Only.” An old silver camping trailer sits off to one side, half buried by tall grass and weeds. A half-dozen bikes are parked in the driveway.

Inside, it’s dark and smells strongly of mildew.

Fernando, who is just about to turn 21, is leaning forward, his elbows on his knees. He and four others sit around a coffee table, laughing awkwardly about the radio reporter who knocked on their door just a few minutes ago.

U.S. ICE

  Dozens of Christian Indonesians challenging deportation orders issued last year have reached a milestone in their legal battle.

 

Yesterday, 44 of a total 51 individuals named in a class action suit from last year received notice that the U.S. Department of Justice would grant motions to reopen their asylum cases.

Bryan Pocius / Flickr Creative Commons

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has been running checkpoints in New Hampshire more frequently under the Trump administration, setting up on Interstate 93 near the small towns of Woodstock and Lincoln.

The stated goal of these stops is enforcing immigration law, and to that end, they have been fairly successful. Agents have arrested more than 50 people over the past two years who they determined to be in the country illegally. 

But those in support of the stops are often quick to turn attention to a topic other than immigration: drugs and the state’s opioid crisis.

Robert Garrova for NHPR

A group of about 40 began their journey in the rain in front of Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices in Manchester. They'll end up at the Strafford County jail in Dover.

 

Organizers from several faith-based groups have protested and led prayers outside the Norris Cotton Federal Building for about a year now. They say this action represents a bigger step towards bringing attention to immigration policy in the U.S.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

On Thursday, protesters delivered a petition to Governor Chris Sununu’s office they say is signed by more than 3,600 people. They're asking for the governor to call for an end to Border Patrol checkpoints on Interstate 93.

 

In the past few years the American Civil Liberties Union has been at the forefront in the fight to protect the rights of immigrant detainees.

Now the ACLU is expanding its Immigrants' Rights Project in New Hampshire, which the organization says is dedicated to expanding and enforcing the civil liberties and civil rights of immigrants and to combatting public and private discrimination against them. For this effort, the New Hampshire ACLU has hired its first immigration legal fellow.

SangYeob Kim spoke with NHPR's Peter Biello about his new position.

  Catholic Charities New Hampshire will receive more than $350,000 in grant funding to protect immigrant victims of crime.

 

The money comes from the federal Victims of Crime Act and was allocated through the New Hampshire Department of Justice.

 

Cathy Chesley is director of immigration legal services for Catholic Charities. She said the money will allow her organization to continue to support immigrant families who may fear deportation and not seek out help.

 

Via Wikimedia Commons

  

Thursday was the court-ordered deadline for border authorities to reunite families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border. A Keene woman whose sister-in-law and nephew were separated says they've now been reunited, but the reunification comes without answers to key questions.

Why were they cleared for reunification while others still wait in detention centers? Why were they not deported back to Honduras? And how long can they stay? 

 

While the Trump administration fortifies the southern border, there's growing concern over the number of foreigners entering the country illegally across the porous northern border with Canada.

People crossing the border between Vermont and Quebec have paid smugglers up to $4,000, usually payable when the immigrants reach their U.S. destination, according to officials and court documents.

While the number of arrests is tiny compared with the southern border, the human smuggling is just as sophisticated.

Courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection

The ACLU of New Hampshire held a Know Your Rights training in Concord Thursday night. The training was in response to the immigration checkpoints conducted by U.S. Customs and Border Protection along I-93.

Border/State

Jul 13, 2018
Robert Garrova

Conversations around immigration have become a hot-button issues once again, not just in national rhetoric, but here in the Granite State. On today's show we'll hear of one family's vacation that came to a screeching halt on I-93, what an open borders policy could look like, and we'll hear about the sport that transcends borders.  

  •   Plus a conversation with Milford grad and Seattle Reign FC's Morgan Andrews
  • A Father-Daughter bond with deep love of country and soccer 

dawn paley / Flickr/CC

Americans across the country with relatives detained at the border are working to be reunited with their loved ones.

Courtesy photo

Victoria is 23 and working her way through college. Over Memorial Day weekend, she and her parents piled into the car and drove from New York for a vacation in the North of New Hampshire.

Hanging out at the hotel, taking a ride on the Cog Railway, that kind of thing.

CBP.gov

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont introduced legislation last week that would put limits on where Border Patrol officers can operate immigration checkpoints. The “Border Zone Reasonableness Restoration Act of 2018” is co-sponsored by Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.).

Robert Garrova for NHPR

More than a hundred people rallied outside Dover City Hall Wednesday night to protest family separations in immigration cases.

Speakers with the ACLU of New Hampshire and local faith-based groups denounced the Trump administration's “zero-tolerance” immigration policy. While many of the remarks centered around the national conversation on immigration, several speakers called out recent Border Patrol checkpoints in the White Mountains as leading to family separations.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The U.S. Supreme Court today upheld President Trump's travel ban affecting Muslim-majority countries, including Syria, Iran, Yemen, Libya and Somalia.

 

The International Institute of New England, one of two agencies that resettles refugees in New Hampshire, says it's "profoundly disappointed" by the ruling.

 

New Hampshire Congresswoman Annie Kuster joined Democratic delegation that toured immigration control facilities in Texas over the weekend.

The group met with over 40 mothers who were separated from their children, and who are now being detained as a result of the president's recent immigration policies.

Kuster says she observed a lot of confusion among enforcement officers at the detention center who are unsure of how the families would be reunited.

NPR

 

U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen said Friday that Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen should resign unless she promptly implements a plan to reunite children separated from their parents at the southern border.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

 

New Hampshire's Democratic Congressional delegation says President Donald Trump's executive order ending the policy of separating families fails to protect those children who were already taken from their parents at the border.

Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan say the order does not provide a solution for the children and parents who remain separated. Shaheen says it is a violation of the law, leaving children indefinitely in detention centers.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday ending his administration’s immigration policy to separate children from their parents at the U.S. border.

Congresswoman Annie Kuster is planning to visit McAllen, Texas on Friday, where hundreds of children are being kept in a former warehouse. She spoke with All Things Considered Host Peter Biello about her trip and what’s next for immigration reform.


Updated at 5:18 p.m. ET

President Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday to end his controversial policy that has resulted in thousands of family separations and brought criticism from Democrats and Republicans.

"We're going to keep families together but we still have to maintain toughness or our country will be overrun by people, by crime, by all of the things that we don't stand for and that we don't want," Trump said Wednesday morning, when he announced that he would sign the order.

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

People in New Hampshire have been reacting to the news of President Trump ending the family separation policy at the border. NHPR’s Leila Goldstein gathered some voices in Concord earlier Wednesday before the executive order was signed.

New Hampshire Public Radio will air a one-hour special from 1A titled "Families At The Border" Wednesday at 8 p.m.

Thousands of children have been separated from their parents at the southern border of the United States under the federal government's "zero tolerance" policy.

A Quinnipiac University poll found that while a third of voters oppose the policy - more than half of Republicans polled support the policy.

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