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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 Trust0000017a-15d9-d736-a57f-17ff89e10000

Protesters Against N.H. Border Patrol Checkpoints Present Petition to Sununu

Robert Garrova for NHPR
Protesters make signs outside the statehouse calling for an end to Border Patrol checkpoints in N.H.

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.

 

About two dozen people showed up to rally against the stops. Organizing groups included NextGen New Hampshire, the United Valley Interfaith Project, and the Granite State Organizing Project. According to Customs and Border Protection, the checkpoints have lead to the arrest of 22 people without legal immigration status over the summer.

 

Protester Anne Grossi says the temporary checkpoints have touched her family directly. Her daughter-in-law is Thai and wanted to have several of her Thai friends visit her in New Hampshire over the 4th of July holiday.

 

"The short of it was they all decided not to come out of New York,” Grossi said. “They were just too terrified to get on the roads and just afraid they might be stopped, even though they had visas."

 

Grossi says she's written a letter to Sununu stressing what she believes is an impact the stops are having on the state's tourism industry.

 

"They basically make New Hampshire a very un-welcoming state,” said Asma Elhuni, an organizer with the United Valley Interfaith Project. “Tourists are afraid to come by and it divides us as a state."

 

Sarah Jane Knoy with the Granite State Organizing Project, a statewide faith-based organization, said a big concern for her group has been what she sees as targeting of immigrants.

 

“We’ve heard so many stories from people who’ve been stopped at these checkpoints and even if they’re citizens and have other documents that allow them to be here legally, they’re still terribly, terribly frightened and intimidated,” Knoy said.

 

Sununu has suggested that the checkpoints have been effective in apprehending drug traffickers and that they are part of the federal government doing its job.

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