Latin American Coalition

Jose Hernandez-Paris of the Latin American Coalition spoke at a press conference near the Charlotte office of Sen. Thom Tillis Tuesday.
David Boraks / WFAE-FM

President Trump's decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, or DACA, brought a range of reactions in North Carolina. Congressional Democrats called it a betrayal and cold-hearted. Republicans applauded, though they disagree on how far to go with a law to replace DACA. Immigrant advocates hope for a compromise to help DACA's so-called "dreamers." 

North Carolina General Assembly

Updated 4:54 p.m.
North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis is applauding the Trump administration's decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, or DACA. Tillis said Tuesday morning it should be up to Congress to set a long-term policy on the status of immigrants who arrived as children.

Tom Bullock / WFAE

Immigrant groups in North Carolina are mobilizing amid reports that President Donald Trump may end the DACA program, while giving Congress six months to come up with a possible replacement.

Latin American Coalition

In the days immediately following last month's election, many Latinos in the U.S. reacted strongly to Donald Trump's victory. Some called his election as president "sad" or even "a tragedy," and they expressed fear for themselves or their families in the future. 

Members of Charlotte's Latin American community have also been digesting Trump's win and wondering what the future holds under the next presidential administration. "I think there's a lot of uncertainty and a lot of fear in our community," says Jose Hernandez-Paris, who is executive director of Charlotte's Latin American Coalition. He says immigration issues are the top concern for Latinos as Trump prepares to take office.

In NC, Citizenship Applications Spike As Election Nears

Mar 30, 2016
Michael Tomsic

The number of immigrants becoming American citizens is on the rise. In Charlotte and across the country, applications for citizenship have spiked as the election approaches, according to federal data. That’s not unusual in presidential election years. But in North Carolina, the increases are in fact the continuation of a trend that started five years ago. WFAE’s Michael Tomsic explores what’s driving more immigrants to become Americans.

Tom Bullock / WFAE News

The crowd, at first, was eager. Members of Charlotte’s Hispanic community gathered Thursday night to watch President Obama announce changes in the enforcement to America’s immigration laws. As for the mood after the speech? That varied from person to person.

To say the room at the Latin American Coalition was packed is an understatement. Around 75 people poured in. Those who could, sat in chairs, others stood where they could or sat on the floor near the screen where the president’s speech would be projected.

Since October, an estimated 57,000 unaccompanied minors have entered the country. The Border Patrol estimates that number could reach 90,000 by the end of September, although the number of daily arrivals is starting to slow.

As debate continues in Washington over how to deal with this surge, the Latin American Coalition is busy making plans to help kids they expect to eventually end up in the Charlotte area.

WFAE’s Marshall Terry spoke to the Coalition’s Armando Bellmas. Here's their conversation.

Michael Tomsic

"A good first step." That's how some North Carolina immigration advocates and business leaders are describing the immigration overhaul filed in the U.S. Senate Wednesday.


Hundreds March In Charlotte For Immigration Reform

Apr 11, 2013
Michael Tomsic

Hundreds of people marched two miles through Charlotte Wednesday to voice their support for immigration reform. The Latin American Coalition helped organize and lead the march.


Michael Tomsic

About 100 immigrants in Charlotte took a big step toward becoming U.S. citizens Sunday. They’re all legal residents. And as part of a national campaign, three local groups teamed up at UNC Charlotte to help them apply for citizenship.

The main thing that’s kept Hing Fu and his family from trying to become U.S. citizens is the cost.

"We are below the poverty line at the moment," Fu said.

He's a senior at UNC Charlotte. He and his mom emigrated from Hong Kong more than a decade ago, and his stepdad is from Mexico.

Pages