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Census stories link diverse immigrant communities

With more than 1.7 million people of foreign birth living in Illinois, no issue except for immigration reform seems as critical as who gets counted and what the census will tell us about our immigrant communities.

Back Home
Sadeq Khatami: A Baha’i family with a secret to freedom

“Everyone makes their own religion,” says Sadeq Khatami, an Iranian refugee who fled his homeland with his wife, Farzaha, and daughter Lale, after the family converted to Baha’i.

Khatami weaves two stories while he speaks of his quick exit: one that he tells his parents, of being one of the few Iranians to win a green card to the United States. The other story, Khatami’s reality, is about his search for religious freedom and struggles with negotiating a new culture in the United States.

The Migration
Camp songs: Shoutout to NPR’s “The Refugee All Stars”

“It’s really a long struggle out of the war, out of miserable conditions, you know? But it matters really very seriously that we do not really think about ourselves alone…”emphasized Reuben Koroma, lead singer of the Sierra Leone Refugee All-Stars.

Culture Shock
Уважаемые читатели!

[Read the story - Reclaiming roots: Young Russian Americans find – and preserve – their identity - in English] Профессор…

Learning the Language
Navigating the divide for Lithuanian college students

There’s a divide among college-aged Lithuanians. Recent immigrants who left after Lithuania’s liberation see the world differently than Lithuanians who were born in America, and whose parents and grandparents left Lithuania after World War II. And it affects their college experience.

Work, Jobs and Money
How are refugees treated in other countries compared with the U.S.?

“We [in the United States] have one of the more punitive systems in the world… The sad thing is that a lot of the world is not very different from us [in the United States],” Tidwell Cullen says.

Problems with Papers
Sin Papeles: Life without papers

“They’re not just selling a piece of paper; they’re selling a chance at a life here,” said Jorge Mujica, an immigration activist in Chicago.

Family
Shahad Alrais: Settling into Chicago, and loving it

At 17, Shahad Alrais fled Iraq with her family. Despite her hardships, she’s now a typical American college student, in love with Chicago.

Fearing the Law
A timeline of 3 families’ experiences with immigration in the U.S.

An audio timeline of three families’ experiences with U.S. immigration law, from arrest to detention to deportation.

Identity
한국선거에 미국인구조사 도움 될까?

[Read the English translation for the story] 외국에 살고있는 한인들도  이제는 국내 선거에 참여할 수 있게 되었다. 이번에 새로 통과…

Good Question
Can refugees work legally in the U.S.?

Shortly after Ernest Pyaohn arrived at O’Hare International Airport as a refugee from a camp in Thailand, he was employed. His job: Working at O’Hare Airport.

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