Immigration

For the better part of two decades, New Hampshire has been home to dozens of Indonesian families who immigrated to the United States fleeing religious persecution. Some of them were denied their applications for religious asylum, and they've spent years checking in with authorities and receiving temporary means to stay in the country. Now, under President Donald Trump, they've been told their time is up. 

This week on Word of Mouth, producer Ben Henry follows one family's journey from Indonesia to New Hampshire to the brink of deportation. 

Courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested eight adults for immigration violations during a three-day checkpoint on Interstate 93 in the town of Woodstock last week.

Customs officials say those detained were from Bulgaria, Ecuador, El Salvador and Guatemala, including two people who overstayed their visas.

In addition, agents seized small quantities of marijuana and hash oil from U.S. citizens during the roadblock, which was coordinated with the New Hampshire State Police.

Ben Henry

New Hampshire's undocumented Indonesian population is taking legal action against President Trump's deportation crackdown. A judge today agreed to halt ongoing deportations for two weeks while the case moves forward. 

Courtesy

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents are again staging an immigration checkpoint on Interstate 93 in the town of Woodstock, New Hampshire, approximately 75 miles from the international border.

In August, Border Patrol agents detained 25 undocumented immigrants, including several minors, during a weekend checkpoint. The majority of those detained were for overstaying their visas.

Thirty legal U.S. residents were also arrested by the Woodstock Police Department for various drug and alcohol related offenses.

USA - NH - New Hampshire State Police
Dave Conner / Flickr Creative Commons

The New Hampshire Division of State Police is reviewing its policies on immigration.

State Police Col. Chris Wagner says right now there is no policy for how troopers should address immigration status during a traffic stop or other encounter.

Wagner says with a national conversation about immigration ongoing, he wants a clear policy in place as soon as possible so that troopers and the public will know what to expect.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: September 8, 2017

Sep 8, 2017

President Trump’s decision to end the DACA immigration policy could affect as many as one thousand people in New Hampshire.  ICE orders deportation for Indonesian immigrants in New Hampshire.  Manchester became the first community to sue opioid manufacturers and distributors - seeking to recoup money spent battling opioid addiction.  And Portsmouth says no to Keno, as Rochester puts it on the ballot. 


Flickr Creative Commons / Brave Sir Robin

Colleges and universities in New Hampshire are reacting to President Trump’s decision to end the immigration policy known as DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

Jonathan McIntosh / https://flic.kr/p/742Wx2

Nineteen Indonesian immigrants living in New Hampshire received deportation orders Tuesday after checking in at federal immigration offices in Manchester.

The immigrants are undocumented, but check in every month with ICE officials.

Maggie Fogarty, co-director of the New Hampshire program for the American Friends Service Committee, said ICE told the Indonesians to return next month with plane tickets showing a November departure.

Fogarty said immigrants who have been complying with regular check-ins are easy targets for deportation.

President Trump’s decision to end the DACA immigration policy could affect nearly 1,000 people here in New Hampshire.

Ron Abramson, an immigration attorney based in Manchester, says he’s been working with clients protected by DACA in the run up to this decision to explore their options.

“We’ve been just trying to prepare people for anything. One approach was to get anything that could be filed, filed before this announcement. As a general rule, having a postmark or delivery date before some policy changes at least gives a person potential rights.”

President Trump’s decision to end the DACA immigration policy could affect nearly 400 people here in New Hampshire.

Ron Abramson, an immigration attorney based in Manchester, says he’s been working with clients protected by DACA in the run up to this decision to explore their options.

Jason Moon for NHPR

Vermont senator and former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders made two stops in New Hampshire on Labor Day.

Senator Sanders started his day at the annual AFL-CIO breakfast in Manchester where he spoke alongside New Hampshire senators Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan.

Ben Henry for NHPR

A group of Indonesians in New Hampshire who are facing deportation went before federal immigration officials Friday in Manchester. Many have lived illegally in the US for years under the supervision of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), but are now encountering tightened immigration policies under President Trump.

Courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Border Patrol agents staged a weekend checkpoint on Interstate 93 in Lincoln, New Hampshire over the weekend, resulting in the detention of 25 undocumented immigrants, including several minors.

AP Photo/Matt York

 Earlier this week, NHPR featured the story of nearly two dozen undocumented Indonesian immigrants facing deportation, after having lived in the Dover area for two decades.

During a routine check-in with federal immigration officials earlier this month, they were told to purchase plane tickets, and make plans to leave the country in less than two months, or face detention.

It's a situation immigrant advocates say is playing out in communities across New Hampshire, as the Trump administration’s new, more aggressive immigration enforcement policy takes effect.

Ben Henry for NHPR

Under prior administrations, Christian Indonesian immigrants living illegally in the US were required to check in with immigration officials every few months, but they were not deported. Under President Trump, that’s changing.

Twenty-three Indonesians in New Hampshire arrived at a check-in on August 1st in Manchester and were told they would be deported within a month, to a home country where they fear religious persecution.

Josh Rogers for NHPR

After last fall’s election, New Hampshire's Second District Congresswoman, Ann McLane Kuster, said she hoped to find areas where should could agree with President Trump.

"Absolutely I’ll be looking for common ground. Paid family leave that’s one that I think is important, and obviously infrastructure investment, I think is very significant for the economy. And I think there will be others."

Samantha Fogel

New Hampshire has 50 new Americans calling it home as of today. They were sworn in as new citizens at a ceremony in Manchester Wednesday, representing 27 nations. This is the fifth year for this annual naturalization ceremony. 

Photo via TripAdvisor

A Mexican restaurant in New Boston that was raided by immigration agents this week has shuttered.

La Cabana Mexican Restaurant announced in a Facebook post on Thursday that Immigration and Customs Enforcement had raided their restaurant that morning, picking up half its staff.

The AP confirmed with ICE that two people who had been previously deported from the United States were arrested outside the restaurant.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Nine months ago, Joyce Chance left a refugee camp in Uganda where she had spent the last eleven years. Chance, who was born in Congo, boarded a plane with her two kids, and came to the United States.

A refugee resettlement agency in Concord, New Hampshire picked them up at the airport, and moved them into a one-room apartment.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Manchester Bishop Peter Libasci spent an hour visiting immigrants detained at the Strafford County Jail in Dover on Monday.

The decision to visit the jail came after the Bishop  met with a parish in Manchester on Sunday with many Hispanic congregants. That Parish, St Anne-St. Augustin, had sought to protect undocumented immigrants living in the neighborhood by proclaiming itself a, quote, “sanctuary church.”

The Bishop responded last month with a letter urging Catholic churches against such proclamations.

Courtesy Easterseals NH

Easterseals New Hampshire was trying to fill 280 open positions in Manchester to serve children with physical, neurological or behavioral disabilities. To fill those open positions, Easterseals had to get creative.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

In February, the Trump White House directed immigration enforcement to begin detaining and deporting all unauthorized immigrants. This marked a change from Obama-era directives, telling agents to prioritize deporting individuals convicted of serious crimes.

But how do immigration agents find undocumented but otherwise law-abiding immigrants? New England News Collaborative Executive Editor John spoke with reporters Kathleen Masterson from VPR and Emily Corwin of NHPR about big differences between how the states approach working with Federal Immigration officials.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The number of people detained in New Hampshire by federal immigration authorities since Donald Trump took office was greater than the number detained any of the previous six months. 

josh rogers/nhpr

U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen visited former Iraqi refugee Tamam Mohamad, at the Spice Center market in Manchester to call attention to her opposition to President Trump's new executive order banning U.S. from 6 Muslim-majority countries and freezing all refugee resettlement.

Mohmmad came from Iraq in the late-1990s with $20. He eventually became a citizen and returned to his home country for 3 years as U.S. military interpreter. He says Iraq may not be included in the President’s new executive order, but that doesn’t matter to him.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

President Trump has signed a revised executive order, once again barring travel to the United States from six majority-Muslim countries and suspending the U.S. refugee program.

It's similar to the president's January order that was blocked by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. But this latest order leaves Iraq off the list of barred countries.

The White House cites more cooperation with the Iraqi government in vetting people who apply for U.S. visas. The latest order also specifically states that it does not apply to legal permanent U.S. residents or current visa holders.

Acid Pix via flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/8Nphxr

On today's show:

  • Our Civics 101 podcast looks into the process of impeachment
  • "The Best and Worst a Country Has to Offer" from producer Virginia Lora. Listen again at prx.org.
  • Writer Ismail Muhammed talks about his piece: "The Misunderstood Ghost of James Baldwin" - Interview starts at 12:10
  • Tomorrow is the last day of the RPM Challenge. Producer Taylor Quimby checks in on Rob "RC" Thomas as he wraps up his 10 songs. - Interview starts at 26:00

Emily Corwin for NHPR

As immigration officials ramp up deportation of new classes of unauthorized immigrants, more residents and visitors without documents fear run-ins with police.

On New Hampshire's diverse Southern border, a traffic stop in one town could lead to very different consequences than the same kind of stop one town over.

Allison Quantz for NHPR

Dartmouth College is joining other Ivy League schools in opposing President Trump’s immigration order.

The Hanover-based school, along with 16 other elite institutions, filed a legal brief in a New York federal court on Monday. The colleges and universities argue that the travel ban, which is currently on hold following a federal appeals court ruling, would harm their ability to attract and educate the world’s best scholars.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

As President Donald Trump’s executive order on refugees garners strong reaction from around the country, officials in Durham and Portsmouth have begun discussions about potentially declaring themselves sanctuary cities.

Officials in both communities say they’ve heard from residents about the idea, possibly as part of a coordinated campaign.

Sara Plourde / New England News Collaborative, NHPR

While Republican governors in Massachusetts and Vermont expressed concern over the weekend about President Trump’s recent executive order on immigration and refugees, New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu took a more neutral stance when weighing in on the issue Monday.

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