1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to secondary content



WednesdayMay 18, 2011

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

Read More


New York Short Film, Art Show Portrays the Struggle of the Undocumented

New York Short Film, Art Show Portrays the Struggle of the Undocumented

Photo: A cene from Immigrantula

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

As part of a multimedia art show in New York called ‘We Have Come to Take Your Jobs,’ a short film portrays the struggle of undocumented immigrants who come to America in search of work, but are subject to a life without protection or rights.

Immigrantula is a telenovela in both English and Spanish shot in a documentary style. The immigrants share how each of them came to be in America, as if they were sharing scary stories in the dark.

It starts with the group hiding in the back room of a bar where they are found by immigration officers who ask to see their ID cards. The officers come upon an interesting couple made up of a woman with an American I.D. and her gay immigrant husband. The officers, unable to do anything, let the couple go with a warning, but the hilarious ensues when later that night the group of young people captures an immigration officer in a web and set him up to be the victim of the Immigrantula spider.

Dubbed a “pro-immigration invocation sensation,” the film is a creation of Viva Ruiz;s “We Have Come to Take Your Jobs” art show.

After the film’s premiere, the actors along with other performers came on stage for a costumed dance by the Latin art-house group Escandalo. The dance was described by Feet in 2 Worlds as a “prosperity ritual for all who have stolen across or who are currently stealing across borders in search of a better life.”

Read more at Feet in 2 Worlds →

STUDY: Hispanic Top Users of Mobile Tech Especially for Civic Engagement

STUDY: Hispanic Top Users of Mobile Tech Especially for Civic Engagement

Photo: Mobile Use Amongst Latinos

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Hispanics outpace other demographic groups as users of mobile phones and social media, according to a report released today by The Hispanic Institute.

“Our research shows that Hispanics are enthusiastic consumers of wireless services,” said Gus West, Board Chair of The Hispanic Institute. “Latinos depend on mobile technology to engage with their fellow citizens—and the political process.”

The study—“Connected Hispanics and Civic Engagement”—explains how Hispanics have used mobile technology to affect change in three important areas: Immigration, Education, and Voter Registration.

The Latino community has been quick to embrace wireless services in part because of the high premium that Hispanic culture places on civic engagement and neighborly communication. Nearly 90 percent of Hispanics own mobile phones, compared to just 80 percent of whites. And 53 percent of Hispanics use mobile devices to access the internet. Only 33 percent of non-Hispanic Whites do the same.

“At The Hispanic Institute, we’ve witnessed the power of mobile technology in the Latino community firsthand, with our voter registration and mobilization efforts in Nevada last year,” said West.

“Mobile and wireless technology have helped narrow the digital divide for Hispanics,” West concluded. “Our new report illustrates how important mobile technology is to the Latino community—and how Hispanic consumers will use these services in the future.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Snoop Dogg’s New Album Features Collaborations With Charlie Sheen and David Guetta

Snoop Dogg’s New Album Features Collaborations With Charlie Sheen and David Guetta

Photo: Snoop Dogg & The Sheen Dogg.

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Titled “Doggumentary,” Snoop Dogg’s eleventh album sees the rapper explore different genres beyond rap and hip-hop.

The album features guest performances by Kanye West, Sade, David Guetta and also Willie Nelson.

Most notably it includes a collaboration between Snoop Dogg, and the torpedo himself, Charlie Sheen!

‘Sheen was my friend before all this happened so I do not judge him,’ Snoop Dogg said. ‘He called on me and I came through for him.

The unlikely pair sing together on the song (you guessed it!) “Winning.”

‘He is conducting his business, living and functioning. But if the station (CBS, the network behind Two And A Half Men) wanted to put him in a box, then what would have been crazy is staying in that situation.’

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Excluded Candidates Angry They Were Not Invited to ‘Cuban-only’ Mayoral Debate

Excluded Candidates Angry They Were Not Invited to ‘Cuban-only’ Mayoral Debate

Photo: Florida International University

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Florida International University and a number of Miami-Dade mayoral hopefuls are outraged after non-Spanish speaking candidates were excluded from a mayoral debate.

Univision broadcasted the publicly funded debate, to which only four of the eleven mayoral candidates were invited.

African-American candidate and former rapper, Luther Campbell told CBS Miami that he was appalled at what he referred to as a “Cuban-only forum,” saying, “The university is having a Cuban-only forum, which is wrong to the students, because the students are from all different races and all different cultures and all the students don’t speak only Spanish.”

Another candidate that was not at the debate, Roosevelt Bradley, said he was “outraged” that the university would allow such a “polarizing and divisive event” to take place on the campus.

The university fought back against the allegations saying that it was not involved in running the event, and only acted as a venue for it.

Countering the school’s claim, Campbell said the university advertised the event to students with letters inviting them to attend.

An invitation from FIU Vice-President Sandra Gonzalez-Levy posted to students “We encourage you to attend and be part of the political process taking place in our community. Be involved!”

Univision said the four candidates, Julio Robaina, Marcelo Llorente, Carlos Gimenez and Jose ‘Pepe’ Cancio, were invited because they were the four highest fund-raisers in the campaign.

Read more at Minority Report →

Latin American Press Abuzz with Alleged Past Sexual Attack On Mexican Maid By Strauss-Kahn

Latin American Press Abuzz with Alleged Past Sexual Attack On Mexican Maid By Strauss-Kahn

Photo: Dominique Strauss-Kahn

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

ImageNewspapers throughout Latin America have remarked and are abuzz with excerpts from a book that accuses the FMI boss of assaulting a maid in Mexico.

According to the DSK chronicle, a book written by a former Strauss-Kahn collaborator who signed it with the pseudonym “Cassandre,” Dominique Strauss sexually attacked a maid while on a business trip in Mexico, an assault that was not reported, and from which the FMI director walked off in absolute impunity. 

No further details were written in the book on the incident, but the allegations certainly mirror the disturbing modus operandi of Kahn in last weekend’s alleged attack.

Read more at El Tiempo, Colombia →

EXTREME TRAFFICKING: Commuter Ferry Boat in Puerto Rico Found with $13M Worth of Cocaine

EXTREME TRAFFICKING: Commuter Ferry Boat in Puerto Rico Found with $13M Worth of Cocaine

Photo: Cocaine Filled Ferry in Vieques, Puerto Rico

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Drug traffickers suffered yet another setback today. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) special agents and Puerto Rico Police Department (PRPD) officers stopped “The Islander,” a ferry boat carrying vehicles from neighboring island Vieques, for a routine inspection. That inspection led to the seizure of nearly 560 kilograms of cocaine with an estimated street value of nearly $13 million.

“In less than two weeks ICE Homeland Security Investigations and PRPD have seized more than 1,500 kilograms of cocaine destined for Puerto Rico which shows the level of cooperation and commitment of our agencies to the safety of our communities,” said Roberto Escobar Vargas, special agent in charge of ICE HSI in Puerto Rico.

In this particular seizure, agents and officers seized 32.9 kilograms of cocaine and a loaded pistol from a Dodge Durango onboard the boat. They immediately arrested two individuals who were with the vehicle. At that point, a white van attempted to avoid inspection by taking off at a high speed. After a hot pursuit, law enforcement officers arrested the drivers of that vehicle and seized an additional 525 kilograms of cocaine.

This investigation is ongoing. If convicted, the defendants could face life in prison.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Govt’s Digital Literacy Initiative Applauded and Noted as Critical to Hispanics Accessing Job Market

Govt’s Digital Literacy Initiative Applauded and Noted as Critical to Hispanics Accessing Job Market

Photo: Internet Job Search for Hispanics

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

The Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies today hailed the launch of DigitalLiteracy.gov, the U.S. Commerce Department’s online digital literacy portal, as an important step toward helping more Americans gain not only computer and Internet skills but also critical access to the job market.

“For those who do not have a digitally literate individual in their household to help them get online, DigitalLiteracy.gov has the potential to assist many first time broadband adopters in becoming part of the digital ecosystem,” says Ralph B. Everett, President and CEO of the Joint Center.

“As a case in point, the majority of job openings are now found exclusively online, and are no longer available in print editions of local newspapers and gazettes. Being digitally literate is no longer a privilege, it is an absolute necessity for success in the modern world,” he said.

The Joint Center Media and Technology Institute has done extensive research on broadband adoption and its correlation with digital literacy. In the Institute’s research report National Minority Broadband Adoption: Comparative Trends in Adoption, Acceptance and Use, it found that 27% of new Internet users reported their children, grandchildren or other younger relatives played the biggest role in teaching them how to use the Internet.

In the same study, the Joint Center found that a higher percentage of African Americans (78 percent) and Hispanics (64 percent) use the Internet to look online for information about jobs as compared to 48 percent of white Internet users.

“With the job market at stake, it becomes more important for everyone to be digitally literate and active users of technology, and clearly many people of color are picking up on this,” says Nicol Turner-Lee, Ph.D., Vice President of the Joint Center Media and Technology Institute.

The new government web site was created by the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) in partnership with other federal agencies including the Department of Education, the Federal Communications Commission and the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences. The site is a hub for digital literacy training and also assists users with information on resume writing, finding a job, and tutorials on word processing.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Cop Who Stomped On and Yelled Racial Slurs at a Suspect, Will Not Be Fired (VIDEO)

Cop Who Stomped On and Yelled Racial Slurs at a Suspect, Will Not Be Fired (VIDEO)

Photo: Shandy Cobane

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

On April 17th, 2010, in Seattle, Washington, detective Shandy Cobane stomped on a Latino suspect, and said he would “beat the f*cking Mexican piss out of” him, and the incident was even caught on tape. However, last week it was announced that he would not lose his job with the Seattle Police Department.

Instead, Cobane’s punishment is a 30-day suspension without pay, and he will be demoted from the gang unit and made a patrol officer in a precinct that is yet to be determined.

Seattle Police Chief John Diaz said he would have fired Cobane if he hadn’t thought it would be overturned on appeal.

The video shows Cobane making the Mexican statement just before he stomps on the man’s arm. Officer Mary Woollum is also seen stomping the man once. The man was later released and was not charged with anything.

Chief Diaz said that from now on, if an officer makes a derogatory racial statement, he or she will be fired, and the precedent set by this case should not apply.

Along with the suspension, which is the maximum punishment short of termination, Cobane will have to attend race and community outreach training, and is expected to sign a “last-chance agreement” which states that his Seattle police career will be over he is found guilty of major misconduct again.

Local Latino leaders are outraged however, and say Cobane should have been fired.

While Cobane said he is “grateful for a second chance” the man he stomped on, Martin Monetti Jr., is demanding that Seattle take responsibility for the detective’s actions. His attorney said the decision to not fire Cobane was “disappointing.”

“Because it was pretty obvious that he engaged in misconduct,” said attorney Lorena Gonzalez. “He used racial slurs, and he used excessive force on a person who wasn’t doing anything, just lying on the ground. And he got away with it.”

Monetti is seeking $750,000 in damages for physical and emotional pain, lost wages, medical expenses, attorney fees and costs.


Related Videos

Read more by HS News Staff →

9 Latinos Make it to Forbes’ Top 100 Most Powerful Celebrities!

9 Latinos Make it to Forbes’ Top 100 Most Powerful Celebrities!

Photo: Latinos in Forbes' Most Powerful Celebrity List

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

While Lady Gaga took the top spot as the World’s Most Powerful Celebrity, there were 9 Latinos that made it to Forbes’ Top 100 Most powerful celebrities!  The list is a measure of entertainment-related earnings and media visibility (exposure in print, television, radio and online). Who are the most powerful Latino celebrities?  Read here.

Image

Read more at Forbes →

Study: Air Pollution Is Greatest Near Schools With Minority Students

Study: Air Pollution Is Greatest Near Schools With Minority Students

Photo: Schools with greatest number of minority students are closest to highest amounts of air pollution

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Researchers from the University of Michigan found that schools located in areas with the state’s highest industrial air pollution levels had the lowest attendance rates—an indicator of poor health—as well as the highest proportions of students who failed to meet state educational testing standards.

Researchers examined the distribution of all 3,660 public elementary, middle, junior high and high schools in the state and found that 62.5 percent of them were located in places with high levels of air pollution from industrial sources.

Minority students appear to bear the greatest burden, according to a research team led by Paul Mohai of the U-M School of Natural Resources and Environment and Byoung-Suk Kweon of the U-M Institute for Social Research.

The researchers found that while 44.4 percent of all white students in the state attend schools located in the top 10 percent of the most polluted locations in the state, 81.5 percent of all African American schoolchildren and 62.1 percent of all Hispanic students attend schools in the most polluted zones.

The study results are reported in the May edition of the journal Health Affairs. Mohai and Kweon presented their findings today at a Washington, D.C., forum sponsored by Health Affairs.

“Our findings show that schools in Michigan were disproportionately located in places with high levels of air pollution from industrial sources. In addition, we found that Michigan’s minority students bear a disproportionately high share of the air pollution burden,” said Mohai, a professor at the U-M School of Natural Resources and Environment. Mohai is also a faculty associate at the Institute for Social Research.

The authors conclude that Michigan and other states should require an environmental-quality analysis when education officials are considering sites for new schools. “While the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a draft of voluntary school-siting guidelines in November, those guidelines might not be strong enough and could be ignored by many school districts,” said Kweon, a research investigator at the Institute for Social Research and an adjunct assistant professor in the School of Natural Resources and Environment.

Though the study focused primarily on the effects of industrial air pollutants, nearly identical patterns were found when the researchers analyzed data from the 2005 National Air Toxic Assessment, which includes on-road mobile sources such as cars, trucks and buses, as well as non-road mobile sources such as airplanes, tractors and lawnmowers.

What explains this pattern of schools located near industrial pollution sources?

The authors suggest that the large amount of land that a school requires and the costs of land acquisition probably mean that officials searching for new school locations focus on areas where property values are low, which may be near polluting industrial facilities, major highways and other potentially hazardous sites.

Read more at University of Michigan →

Reports Show Less Cruise Ships Arriving in Mexico but Passengers Spending More

Reports Show Less Cruise Ships Arriving in Mexico but Passengers Spending More

Photo: Cruise Ships in Mexico

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

The Mexican business and economic newspaper, El Economista, is reporting the startling decline of cruise ship arrivals in Mexico.

The report starts at the peak year of 2007 where the country’s tourism sector saw 797 cruise ships dock in ports.  Most years since then there has been a decline in dockings.

In 2008 there were 683 and 586 in 2009.  The 14 percent decline from 2008 to 2009 was in great part due to the swine flu epidemic that originated in Mexico.  This year dockings will show another decline to 549 arrivals.

The decline starting in 2007 happens to coincide with President Felipe Calderon’s declared war on the country’s drug cartel.  That war has left over 35,000 Mexicans dead.  Nonetheless, the cruise ships business remains critical to Mexico’s tourism.  Fortunately cruise ship passengers are spending more when they dock which has helped offset the decline in passenger numbers. 

Passengers will spend approximately $104 million in 2011 and spent slightly more with many more passengers in 2007 at $112 million.

Read more at McClathy DC →

WATCH Comedian Al Madrigal Joins The Daily Show With Jon Stewart (VIDEO)

WATCH Comedian Al Madrigal Joins The Daily Show With Jon Stewart (VIDEO)

Photo: Al Madrigal joins The Daily Show

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Watch the first segment of comedian Al Madrigal, who joined the cast of the Daily Show as Senior Latino correspondent earlier this week.

Madrigal appeared on several Comedy Central shows, including his own half-hour stand-up special: “Comedy Central Presents: Al Madrigal, John Oliver’s New York Stand-up Show and Pretend Time with Nick Swardson”. His late-night TV appearances include Conan O Brien’s show, Lopez Tonight, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Jimmy Kimmel Live. Madrigal also has a part in Free Agents, the Hank Azaria-Kathryn Hahn comedy series that NBC picked up for its fall schedule.

Visit his website at http://www.almadrigal.com/

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

513 Migrants Rescued Inside ‘Inhumane’ Cramped Trailers Making Way to U.S. (VIDEO)

513 Migrants Rescued Inside ‘Inhumane’ Cramped Trailers Making Way to U.S. (VIDEO)

Photo: Illegal Immigrants Inside Tractor Trailers

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Mexican authorities are reporting that they have rescued 513 migrants of different nationalities inside two cramped tractor trailers making their way into the U.S. illegally.

The migrants apparently paid $7,000 each to smugglers and were rescued in Chiapas, Mexico.  Authorities found the conditions inside the trailers ‘inhumane’ and highly dangerous.  One trailer was housing 240 people and the other had 273 inside.  The trailers were spotted when they rushed past a security check point near the U.S.-Guatemala border.
Image
The majority of illegal aliens were from Central America and some from as far away as China, Japan and Nepal.  Women and children were also found inside the trailers.

All the migrants are being processed by Mexico’s Interior ministry and will be returned to their native homelands. 

Read more at My Foxy NY →

World’s Richest Man Predicts Chile Will Be the Next Developed Country in Latin America

World’s Richest Man Predicts Chile Will Be the Next Developed Country in Latin America

Photo: Carlos Slim predicts Chile will be next LatAm to recieve 'developed' country status

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

In a presentation last week, Carlos Slim, the world’s richest man, predicted that Chile will become the next to move from an “underdeveloped” to a developed country.

The Mexican communications mogul pointed to Chile’s mining industry boom in northern Chile are being primarily responsible for the country’s advancement towards becoming a developed nation.

“In the case of Latin America, I believe Chile will be the first to break that barrier (of underdevelopment)” Slim said. “Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, and Mexico will probably be next.”

He noted that Chile will need to improve its education and poverty levels. He suggested that poverty can be countered by improving education and creating jobs. Backing up the idea has been Chile’s president, Sebastian Piñera, who has shared plans to increase the availability of grants for technical education. President Piñera is expected to present his the plans for the grants in his national address on May 21.

Slim pointed out that while many Latin American countries are not producing at the same Gross Domestic Product (GDP) level as developed countries around the world, they do not have the tremendous debt that nations such as the U.S. have.

“We have a secure financial system with a stable macroeconomic foundation,” said Slim. “We can say that we are secure because we don’t have an overly-complicated structure.”

Read more at MercoPress →

Shakiro Dazzles in Argentina (VIDEO)

Shakiro Dazzles in Argentina (VIDEO)

Photo: Chilean Shakiro

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Shakiro was recently in Susana Giménez’s show, where he sung three of Shakira’s hits, becoming the new sensation in Argentina.

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Kalimba Accused of Raping Ex Girlfriend and her 5 Year-old Girl

Kalimba Accused of Raping Ex Girlfriend and her 5 Year-old Girl

Photo: Kalimba Accused of Rape Again

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

The Musician denies the accusations brought forth by Kimberly de la Campa, his former fiancée.

Mexican magazine TV Notas published an interview with model Kimberly de la Campa where the model said that both her and her daughter had been attacked sexually by Kalimba.

Del Campo said that the statements given to the court last December by the other alleged victims encouraged her to come forth and denounce the devious actions of the music man.

“When Daiana explained to the word that he screamed when he pulled her, how he positioned her, I was like ‘it can’t be! It is too coincidental!”

The model goes on to describe in full detail how she became suspicious of foul play between Kalimba and her 5 year-old daughter Maria José and took her to a psychologist and then to a gynecologist who told her the child had been molested.

Alberto Woolrich, Kalimba’s lawyer said that Mrs. De la Campa’s accusations obey to his clients refusal to pay an extortion.

“Together with a man she identified as her father in law, Kimberly showed up to Kalimba’s residence and both tried to extortion my client […] Kalimba’s innocence is an irrefutable truth, [these people] pretend to take advantage of a former judicial situation, to obtain financial goods,” said Woolrich.

Kalimba himself published on Twitter that the storm was brewing, and like always proclaimed himself a soldier of God.

 

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

¡Ay Papi! Mother of Arnold’s Love Child Revealed: Former Housekeeper Mildred Patricia Baena, 50

¡Ay Papi! Mother of Arnold’s Love Child Revealed: Former Housekeeper Mildred Patricia Baena, 50

Photo: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Mildred Baena

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Latina Mildred Patricia Baena (Patty), 50, has been identified by TMZ.com and Radaronline.com as the former maid and mother of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s love child.

The child, believed to be in his early teens now, bares a striking resemblance to a younger Arnold. Though we have blurred the minor’s face, he his gap-toothed smile and wavy blond/brown hair is reminiscent of his Arnold’s portrayal of Conan.

Baena reportedly has three other children, and lives several hours outside of Los Angeles. Sources have said she began to “pursue” the married man in the late 1990’s. Her and Arnold would have unprotected sex during the day when no one was home, and they were never caught. The action star turned California governor was not told he was the father of the boy until he was a toddler. Upon finding out, sources say he was always “generous” and helped Baena.

The housekeeper had worked for the family for 20 years before allegedly retiring in January. On Monday, Schwarzenegger made the announcement that he had fathered a child with a household staffer more than a decade ago, before he was elected as governor of California.

RadarOnline.com has also reported that Baena did not retire, and in fact was fired by Schwarzenegger as in an attempt to save his 25-year marriage to Maria Shriver, with whom he has 4 children. Prior to Arnold’s statement, Baena was reportedly angry that “all of a sudden and out of nowhere, she was told there was no longer work for her … Mildred took it hard.”

Radar’s unidentified source also said, “Mildred did not retire… she was working for Arnold and Maria until about four weeks ago,” and she was “furious that the father of her 14-year-old son would callously fire her from her job after decades of loyal service.”ImageImageImage

Read more by HS News Staff →

Former Senator Majority Leader of Puerto Rico Sentenced to 5 Yrs in Prison for Extortion

Former Senator Majority Leader of Puerto Rico Sentenced to 5 Yrs in Prison for Extortion

Photo: Puerto Rico's Jorge de Castro Font Sentenced

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Jorge De Castro Font, 47, a former senate majority leader in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, was sentenced today to 60 months in prison after pleading guilty to 20 counts of honest services wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit extortion, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez.  De Castro Font also was sentenced in Puerto Rico by U.S. District Judge Francisco A. Besosa to serve three years of supervised release following his prison term.

De Castro Font pleaded guilty on Jan. 21, 2009, to engaging in a scheme to deprive the people of Puerto Rico of his honest services as a legislator.  De Castro Font also pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit extortion through fear of economic harm and under color of official right.  De Castro Font was charged with these and other related offenses on Oct. 2, 2008.

In his guilty plea, de Castro Font admitted that from Jan. 2, 2005, through August 2008, he directly and indirectly solicited between approximately $500,000 and $525,000 in cash payments and other benefits, such as campaign contributions in excess of the legal limits, lodging, private flights, meals and other things of value, from individuals.  De Castro Font admitted that he engaged in official acts on behalf of some of these individuals who had provided him with these undisclosed benefits, including proposing legislation, preventing legislative projects to be voted or acted upon, and persuading other legislators to vote for or against legislation.

De Castro Font also admitted to participating in a conspiracy to obtain cash and other benefits from five individuals he acknowledged that he knew felt if they did not provide him with the financial benefits requested, de Castro Font could use his official position to harm their financial interests.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Velázquez, Serrano Urge Governor Cuomo to Withdraw from Secure Communities

Velázquez, Serrano Urge Governor Cuomo to Withdraw from Secure Communities

Photo: Secure Communities

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

On Friday, Congressman José E. Serrano (D-NY) and Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) wrote New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo, urging that the state withdraw from the federal ‘Secure Communities’ program.  Joining a growing, statewide chorus calling for New York to exit the program, the lawmakers said ‘Secure Communities’ is needlessly harsh and does not reflect New York’s history of welcoming immigrants. 

Below is the full text of Serrano and Velázquez’s letter.

For further information:

Alex Haurek (for Velázquez)  (202) 225-2361
Philip Schmidt (for Serrano) (202) 225-4361      

——————————————-

May13, 2011

Honorable Andrew Cuomo
Governor of New York
State Capitol
Albany, NY 12224


Dear Governor Cuomo:


We are writing to urge you to rescind New York’s Memorandum of Agreement and withdraw from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Secure Communities program.  Our concern with New York’s ongoing involvement in the Secure Communities program comes from the damage that it is causing in our city and communities.  New York City and New York State have a proud history as a welcoming place for people from all over the world to live; voluntarily participating in ICE’s Secure Communities program tarnishes that heritage.


Last year, New York joined Secure Communities without a thorough investigation or public review of the possible consequences for the state, including decreased public safety, increased legal and fiscal liabilities and potential violations of New Yorkers’ civil rights.  Even then, groups such as the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) indicated that there were questions that needed to be asked and pointed out that ICE had identified more than 111,000 criminal aliens in local custody, of whom only about 11,000 (10%) were charged with or convicted of crimes.

Read more by HS News Staff →

A Firms Preferential Hiring of Foreigners Over Americans Targeted by Justice Dept.

The Justice Department announced that it has reached a settlement agreement with Iflowsoft LLC, a computer programming services provider in Iselin, N.J., to settle allegations that Iflowsoft engaged in a pattern or practice of citizenship status discrimination by preferring to hire temporary visa holders over U.S. citizens. 

According to the department’s findings, Iflowsoft posted several job advertisements for IT professionals expressing a preference for temporary visa holders (specifically H-1B transfers and/or OPT candidates).  The facially discriminatory advertisements deterred the charging party, a U.S. citizen, from applying to Iflowsoft.  In addition, the department found Iflowsoft hired an H1-B visa holder without considering a qualified U.S. citizen applicant.  The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) generally prohibits employers from discriminating based on citizenship status during the hiring process. 

Under the terms of the settlement, Iflowsoft has agreed to pay civil penalties and back pay to U.S. citizens who were qualified for the positions advertised and applied, or would have applied for the positions.  Iflowsoft has also agreed to provide its employees training on the INA anti-discrimination requirements, adopt nondiscrimination policies with respect to recruitment and hiring, and maintain and submit records to the United States for the three-year term of the agreement. 

The Civil Rights Division’s Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) is responsible for enforcing the INA anti-discrimination provision, which prohibits employers from discriminating against work-authorized individuals on the basis of citizenship status or national origin in hiring, firing, recruitment or referral for a fee.

Read more by HS News Staff →



WednesdayMay 18, 2011