Immigration

Updated 9:55 a.m. ET

A federal judge in California temporarily blocked the Trump administration's decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program late Tuesday night.

Widely known as DACA, the program protects young immigrants from deportation. In September, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the program would be phased out.

It may be a new year, but Congress plans to spend most of January wrapping up old business left over from 2017.

Congressional leaders are promising to head off any chance of a government shutdown well before the Jan. 19 deadline, but a nearly yearlong fight over President Trump's demands to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border could threaten those plans.

Martin do Nascimento/KUT

From Texas Standard.

Across the country right now, more than 700,000 people are looking to Congress for an answer about their futures – and about 124,000 of them live in Texas. We’re talking about Dreamers, the name that refers to young people brought to the U.S. without authorization when they were just kids. Now, the Obama-era executive action protecting them from deportation is set to expire and it’s up to lawmakers in Washington to decide what to do next.

Andrew Weber / KUT

As the year comes to a close, we're looking back at the stories that defined 2017.

In the Texas Legislature, there were fights: over the so-called bathroom bill and sanctuary city policies. At City Hall, there were more fights: over CodeNEXT and the latest police contract. And on the streets, there were even more fights: over an unorthodox new president and women's rights, ICE raids and immigration policies, and Confederate statues and symbols.

Lynda Gonzalez / KUT

Editor's note: We have removed the last name of the woman profiled in this story to protect the identity of her parents.

Oluwatoyosi, Toyosi for short, stands observant, her hands clasped in the middle of a crowd of more than 40 people in the basement of Hogg Auditorium. The 21-year-old is showcasing a collection of designs at Fest Africa: Africa Uncut, the Texas African Student Organization’s annual cultural showcase.

Austin Price for KUT

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday commended Texas lawmakers for taking a "leadership role" in fighting jurisdictions that oppose President Donald Trump's immigration policies.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Students at a parenting class had trouble focusing the day after a court ruling on Senate Bill 4, Texas' "sanctuary cities" law.

On a recent, perfect morning at Johnson Farms in northern Michigan, workers climb wooden ladders high up into the trees, picking bags strapped across their bodies. The branches are heavy with fruit that glows in the morning sun. Their fingers are a blur, nimbly plucking fruit and filling bushel bags: about 50 pounds per load. It's hard, sweaty work.

Apple season was just getting underway on Old Mission Peninsula, a finger of land poking into Lake Michigan, dotted with lush farms.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The Travis County Sheriff's Office will honor all federal immigration detainer requests following a federal court ruling that held parts of Texas' "sanctuary cities" law can go into effect.

When 2-month-old Isaac Enrique Sanchez was diagnosed with pyloric stenosis, a condition that causes vomiting, dehydration and weight loss in infants, his parents were told that their son's condition was curable. The problem was that no hospital in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas had a pediatric surgery team capable of performing the operation on his stomach.

Immigrants who need to renew their DACA permits can get free legal help through a local nonprofit at a clinic Sept. 17.

Texas Here To Stay is hosting the clinic from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Mexican Consulate on Ben White Boulevard to help people fill out and send in their renewal forms.

Karen Reyes, was brought to the U.S. as a child and is covered under DACA.
Martin do Nascimento

Demonstrators gathered outside Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's office Tuesday to protest the White House decision to get rid of DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. 

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is expected to announce an end to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which shields people brought to the U.S. illegally as children from deportation. The program was started by an executive order from former President Obama in 2012.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Candelario Vazquez, 34, stands in front of a group of 20 people. None of the adults and children, some of them squirming in their hard plastic chairs, have asked to be in the audience.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

When transcripts of President Trump’s conversations with foreign leaders about refugee policy leaked to the press last week, one line got a lot of attention. It was a reference to “local milk people,” presumably dairy farmers, whom the president thought refugees wouldn’t work for.

As it turns out, though, some “milk people” worry it's Trump's immigration policies that may be bad for business.

Courtesy of Creative Action Youth Cinema Collective

On a hot summer day in June, a crowd shuffled into an Alamo Drafthouse to catch a matinee. But the theater wasn't packed for your standard blockbuster with a big Hollywood name; the film was the brainchild of a group of teens.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Fifteen immigrant rights activists were arrested Wednesday after blocking traffic at the intersection of 15th Street and Congress Avenue during a sit-in to protest Attorney General Ken Paxton's push to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.

Federal prosecutors have charged a Florida man with "transporting illegal aliens" after at least 10 people died crammed into the back of a tractor-trailer in San Antonio. The truck, which had been parked in a Walmart parking lot in blistering heat, contained 39 people in total, all of whom were immigrants in the U.S. illegally.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The colorful scene melded two time-honored Texas traditions: political protest and the quinceañera.

With skirts flouncing, 15 young women ascended the steps of the Texas state Capitol on Wednesday morning to a traditional Mexican birthday song played in a mariachi style.

Lexey Swall

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and officials from nine other states on Thursday urged the Trump administration to end an Obama-era program that’s allowed hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants to live and work in the country without fear of being deported.

Christopher Rose

The city of El Paso voted on Tuesday to join the growing list of local governments that have filed a legal challenge in hopes of stopping Texas’ new immigration enforcement law from going into effect.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Drunken driving. Property theft. Possession of a controlled substance.

These are some of the crimes for which the Travis County Sheriff’s Office did not honor requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to detain suspected undocumented immigrants past their sentences or dispositions.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Prosecutors will begin giving out letters to some undocumented witnesses and victims that could potentially shield them from deportation, Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore said Thursday.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Texas is preemptively suing the City of Austin, Travis County and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund to enforce the state’s newly minted “sanctuary city” law, Senate Bill 4.

Updated at 7 p.m. ET

A 13-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit heard arguments on Monday over President Trump's revised travel ban, with judges repeatedly questioning the government's lawyer in the case about Trump's campaign call "for a complete and total shutdown" of Muslims entering the country.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

The Texas House of Representatives has given tentative approval of a bill to ban so-called sanctuary cities. The chamber passed Senate Bill 4 early Thursday morning on a 93-54 vote after about 16 hours of debate. The bill would penalize jurisdictions that limit local law enforcement's cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainer requests

Stephanie Tacy for KUT News

Austin and Travis County do not meet the definition of "sanctuary city" in the eyes of the federal government, Mayor Steve Adler said today after a meeting with Attorney General Jeff Sessions in Washington, D.C.

Read a version of this story in Spanish.

As the White House pushes Congress to fund President Trump's U.S.-Mexico border wall, a new wrinkle has emerged that could stymie parts of the massive project.

Gary Goodenough/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Immigration is at the forefront of political discourse in Texas according to the Texas Lyceum Poll, an independent opinion poll that is conducted each year to gather the opinions of Texans on major policy issues facing the state.

A portion of the south Texas border fence and remote surveillance cameras.
Donna Burton/U.S. Customs and Border Protection (U.S. Government Work)

From Texas Standard:

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said just yesterday that it is "unlikely" that a wall along the United States' southern border will be built in full. That’s different from the Trump administration's original proposed plans to build a continuous 30-foot wall, regardless of the terrain and other potential obstacles.

 

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