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

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Mon January 26, 2015

Immigration Impasse: The Future Of Reform

Credit Jerry Schmidt / Flickr/CC

Late last year, President Obama issued sweeping directives for allowing a certain group of undocumented immigrants to remain here without fear of deportation. On Capitol Hill, opposition is fierce among Republicans, who are now coming up with ways to undo these actions.  We’ll find out more, including impacts in the Granite State.

GUESTS:

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Giving Matters
12:12 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Giving Matters: Immigrant Literacy Connects Cultures and Generations

The New Hampshire Humanities Council’s Connections program is an adult literacy program that aims to develop communities of readers. Hari Sharma, who is originally from Bhutan, joined Connections via his ESOL class. 

 

The books he read with his connections were selected around to focus on important cultural lessons. One unit was based on American suffrage icons including, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony and Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

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Politics
2:54 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Shaheen, Ayotte Split On Obama's Immigration Executive Order

Credit Courtesy Shaheen.Senate.gov

New Hampshire’s two U.S. Senators are split on President Obama’s executive order on immigration preventing nearly five million people in the country illegally from being deported.

During a visit to Portsmouth Friday, Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen said there’s legal precedent for the president’s action.

But Shaheen said there’s more to work to be done.

“I think Congress needs to act. That’s the way to address this issue and to get it done in a way that addresses our border security and addresses our visa system – all of the aspects of immigration.”

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Health
3:34 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Immigrants Growing N.H.'s Food Economy By Changing What's Grown And Sold Locally

Wesley Tiku shows off some mustard greens, one of his store's most popular items, in the produce aisle of Kathmandu Baazar in Concord.
Credit Jack Rodolico

New immigrants often face an unexpected challenge: how to navigate away from an American diet that takes a toll on your health? That’s becoming easier in New Hampshire due to a network of markets and farms that carry familiar foods for the state’s foreign residents.

New Hampshire is home to a small but growing immigrant population; about one in 20 Granite Staters are foreign born. And there’s an experience that unites many of them: that bewildering first visit to an American grocery store.

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NH News
1:19 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Laconia Multicultural Festival To Feature Food, Music From Around The Globe

A scene from the Laconia Multicultural Festival.
Credit laconiamulticulturalfestival.org

The 13th annual Laconia Multicultural Festival will be held Saturday.

David Stamps is one of the event’s organizers and says it has grown to include more than 80 vendors and two music stages.

But he says it also hasn’t gotten away from its roots.

“We have a lot of nonprofits who participate. We have a lot of refugees, first Americans, and many Franco-Americans. It’s just such a variety.”

The downtown festival runs from 10 to 4 and opens with a Parade of Flags.

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Giving Matters
12:04 am
Sat July 26, 2014

Giving Matters: Immigrant Literacy Connects Cultures and Generations

The New Hampshire Humanities Council’s Connections program is an adult literacy program that aims to develop communities of readers. Hari Sharma, who is originally from Bhutan, joined Connections via his ESOL class. 

 

The books he read with his connections were selected around to focus on important cultural lessons. One unit was based on American suffrage icons including, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony and Martin Luther King, Jr.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Mon July 21, 2014

New England Reacts To The Immigrant Surge

Credit dawn paley / Flickr/CC

We discuss New England's reaction to the surge in unaccompanied minors crossing the U.S.- Mexico border, and what it means for the national debate on immigration.

Listen to the program here:

GUESTS:

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New England News
12:12 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Vermont Asked To Consider Housing Undocumented Border Kids

In this June 25, 2014 photo, a group of immigrants from Honduras and El Salvador who crossed the U.S.-Mexico border illegally are stopped in Granjeno, Texas.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 8:54 am

Gov. Peter Shumlin has agreed to a request from the White House to investigate whether the state could house some of the undocumented children now being detained in the southwestern part of the country.

The request from the White House is the first step in a very long process. 

The initial goal is to determine how much capacity each state has to house some of the nearly 60,000 children who have streamed across the border in the last few weeks.

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NH News
1:42 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Hassan Says Feds Haven't Requested N.H. Shelter Immigrant Children

Credit <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/partiallyblind/1164043991/in/photostream/" target="blank">partiallyblind</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons

Governor Maggie Hassan says the federal government has not contacted the state about sheltering some of the unaccompanied children who have crossed the nation’s southern border illegally.

The federal government has reached out to other New England states, including Massachusetts, Vermont, and Connecticut.

Governor Hassan’s spokesman says if the federal government were to make such a request, the governor would share that with the public, authorities, health officials and local communities.

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NH News
4:42 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Senate Weighs In-State Tuition For Children Of Undocumented Immigrants

Credit Kyle Todesca, UNH

Senate lawmakers are considering a bill that would grant in-state tuition at University System of New Hampshire schools to children of undocumented immigrants.

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NH News
5:00 am
Fri March 21, 2014

New Program Helps Refugee Women Start Home Child Care Business

Nidhal Qaraghuli with some of her own kids in her Manchester apartment.
Ryan Lessard NHPR

A new program helps refugees earn money by training stay-at-home moms to be entrepreneurs in the child care industry.


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NH News
7:00 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Sen. Ayotte Weighs In On Immigration Impasse

Credit Cheryl Senter / NHPR

New Hampshire Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte is weighing-in on immigration reform.  This after House Speaker John Boehner said he didn’t think he could pass a bill this year.  

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New England Snapshot
4:57 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

New England Snapshot: Immigration

We're kicking off a new feature on All Things Considered called New England Snapshot, where we look at issues around the region.

One issue playing out in a number of states is immigration. Here in New Hampshire, House lawmakers have approved a measure that would allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition rates at University System of New Hampshire schools.

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NH News
5:30 am
Thu January 16, 2014

N.H. Bhutanese Community Shaken By Recent Suicide, Seeks To Prevent Others

Bhutanese community leaders in N.H. after their two-day workshop.
Bhutanese Community of N.H.

In November, a Bhutanese refugee living in Concord killed himself. Nationally, Bhutanese refugees have the highest suicide rate of any refugee population. And here in New Hampshire, where nearly 2,000 Bhutanese refugees have resettled in the last six years, the community is scrambling to answer the questions ‘why does this happen?’ and ‘how do we prevent it?’


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The Exchange
9:00 am
Tue December 17, 2013

Bhutanese Refugees In The Granite State

Credit acuoptimist / Flickr Creative Commons

A new documentary by New Hampshire filmmaker Doria Bramante follows exiles from the tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan as they abandon their twenty-year effort to return home from Nepalese refugee camps and decide to seek a new life in America. Many of these refugees have resettled in the New Hampshire cities of Concord, Manchester, and Laconia. Today we take a look at their incredible journey…along with the challenges and successes of starting over in the Granite State.

GUESTS:

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Arts & Culture
5:08 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

Refugee Documentary Screens In Concord

An independent documentary produced and directed by two Durham residents chronicles the journey of three refugee families, from their home country of Bhutan to resettlement here in New Hampshire.

The documentary, The Refugees of Shangri-Law, follows the long journey of three families, from the mountains of Nepal to the neighborhoods of the Granite State.

“There was never a strong emphasis on resettlement here in Nepal. It’s no longer that way.” ... Montage of interviews... “That’s why we want to go to America.”

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NH News
12:45 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

From Bolivia to Venezuela: 81 Take Oath To Become American Citizens

Caren Ongany and John Osambo of Lee with their four children outside the Warren B. Rudman Courthouse in Concord Friday. Ongany and Osambo are husband and wife and both became American citizens at a naturalization ceremony.
Credit NHPR / Michael Brindley

At the Warren B. Rudman Courthouse in Concord Friday morning, 81 people from 36 different countries took an oath and became American citizens.

Governor Maggie Hassan spoke at the naturalization ceremony.

Among those sworn in was a man originally from India who now lives in Hudson with his wife and their six month old child.

There was also a husband and wife, both native Kenyans, who became citizens together. They live in Lee with their four children.

And a Manchester man who moved to America from Sweden who said his citizenship was a long time coming. 

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Word of Mouth
9:02 am
Wed July 17, 2013

How Regional Worker Demands Could Influence Immigration Policy

Credit otzberg via flickr creative commons

On July 7th, the senate passed immigration reform legislation with an overwhelming majority. Meanwhile, the republican-led house has verbally panned the bill as “flawed legislation,” leaving little hope for a passage into law. But a new immigration solution has been posited in a report published by the non-profit Migration Policy Institute. Two and a half years in the making, the movement would utilize regional visas and limit immigrants to specific destinations within the United States. Demetrios Papademetriou is president and co-founder of the Migration Policy Institute.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Tue July 16, 2013

Uncertainty Over Immigration Reform

The Senate has passed a significant overhaul of the country’s immigration laws.  The plan includes a path to citizenship and more border security. But the bipartisan effort has stalled at the House border, with some Republicans there calling the bill “dead on arrival.” We’ll talk with Granite Staters following  this debate.

Guests:

- Eva Castillo - Director of the New Hampshire Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees.

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All Things Considered
6:00 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Speaking Up About Violence In A "Forgotten" Country

The cover of "Tell This To My Mother," the novel by Joseph E. Mwantuali.

It may be the largest war in the world that we don’t hear about. The death toll of what is now called the Great War of Africa likely stretches into the millions.

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NH News
11:44 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Group Looks To Counter 'Misinformation' About Refugee Resettlement Efforts In N.H.

Innocent Munguiko, a refugee from Democratic Republic of the Congo, now resides in Concord.
Credit Hank Osborne / Lutheran Social Services

Lawmakers and members of the public met in Concord today to learn more about refugee resettlement efforts in New Hampshire. The breakfast gathering was organized by Lutheran Social Services, a non-profit that offers new refugees a range of services including short-term housing and English-language training.

Steve Duprey, a prominent real estate developer, helped launch a work-skills program in conjunction with Lutheran Social Services for new arrivals. He says it is one of the best moves he’s made in business.

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Word of Mouth
11:55 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Why Private Prisons Don't Want Immigration Reform

Thirty years ago, Corrections Corporation of America opened its first private prison. As demand for border patrol increased over the decades, so has its earnings. Last year, CCA brought in $1.7 billion dollars in revenue – a quarter of which came from government agencies enforcing immigration policy and incarcerating non-citizens in the US. Lee fang is Reporting Fellow with the Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute. He probed the connection between prison profits and stiffer immigration policies and came up with some unsettling answers.

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Word of Mouth
11:55 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Why Private Prisons Don't Want Immigration Reform

Thirty years ago, Corrections Corporation of America opened its first private prison. As demand for border patrol increased over the decades, so has its earnings. Last year, CCA brought in $1.7 billion dollars in revenue – a quarter of which came from government agencies enforcing immigration policy and incarcerating non-citizens in the US. Lee fang is Reporting Fellow with the Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute.

The Exchange
8:05 am
Thu February 7, 2013

A Granite State Take On Immigration Reform

Credit twg1942 via Flickr Creative Commons

After years of rancor and stalemate there now appears to be rare bipartisan movement on this issue on Capitol Hill. Still, there is plenty of room for disagreement over such matters as a path to citizenship for those here illegally. We’ll take a look at some of the major issues at stake -- and what may happen nationally and here in New Hampshire.

Guests:

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Word of Mouth
9:02 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Immigration Reform's Affect On Asian-Americans

Credit marlonius via flickr Creative Commons

With all the talk of how immigration reform will affect our neighbors to the South, we look at how it might affect immigrants to the United States from the Far East. 

A US based Chinese Journalist even argues that certain aspects of  the reforms might actually be beneficial for Asian immigrants. Mee Moua, Executive Director from the Asian American Justice Center joins us to discuss the issue.

The Exchange
10:00 am
Mon November 12, 2012

The Story of the Bhutanese

For the past few years they’ve been our state’s largest incoming refugee group with hundreds coming every year.  A new documentary explores their journeys from nearly twenty years in refugee camps to new lives in the Granite State. We’ll hear their stories, their challenges and hopes for a new life in America. 

Guests

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All Things Considered
5:07 pm
Wed August 29, 2012

Beatrice Munyenyezi's Retrial May Be As Complex As the First

Manchester resident Beatrice Munyenyezi goes on trial on charges she lied about her involvement in the Rwandan genocide to come to the United States and obtain US citizenship.

If that sounds familiar, that's because Munyenyezi was on trial earlier this year on the same charges, but the jury couldn't agree on a verdict and the judge declared a mistrial.

NH News
5:00 pm
Thu August 9, 2012

Neighborhood Stained by Graffiti Rallies

Taylor Quimby for NHPR

A rally was held in Concord today in reaction to racist graffiti discovered last weekend on the home of Somali refugees in the city’s South End. The crime is being linked to last September’s unsolved incident when three homes were targeted in the same neighborhood.  

By noon, about a hundred people had gathered on Thompson street in Concord’s South End.

Ten minutes later, the number had doubled.

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