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Border Wall Eco Fight; Deportation Aftermath; Radio Aztlán

pixel2013 via Pixabay - https://pixabay.com/en/america-mexico-border-elections-1999384/Creative Commons

This Week on Fronteras:


  • Tribal leaders and conservationists unite against President Trump’s proposed border wall.
  •  A Houston area family struggles three months after immigration officers deported the father.
  •  Breaking down language barriers teaching math.
  •  Bilingual “chat bots” text healthy tips to stop smoking and lose weight.
  •  A South Texas, barrio-friendly twist on NPR’s popular satire, A Prairie Home Companion.




Tribal Leaders, Conservationists Fighting Border Wall

Tribal leaders and conservationists issue an international plea to fight President Trump’s plans for a border wall.  The Center for Biological Diversity, Greenpeace Mexico and the Tohono O’odham tribe in the Mexican state of Sonora filed a joint petition this week with the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.  The group says a 30-foot wall would prevent endangered wildlife migration across the border, threatening survival of the jaguar and other species.  It wants “in danger” status granted for the El Pinacate and Gran Desierto de Altar Biosphere Reserve, a Mexican World Heritage site.

The Center for Biological Diversity also recently filed a lawsuit asking the federal government ot investigate the wall's environmental impact.  KUNM's Chris Boros spoke with the Center's Randy Serraglio.

The Story


Credit Escobar family
Escobar family photo. José Escobar, 31, was deported in March. He now lives in El Salvador, while his family remains in Pearland.


How Deportations Are Affecting Families

Three months ago, after attending a routine immigration check-in, a Houston area father was suddenly detained and deported.  Houston Public Media’s Allison Lee reports on how the family of José Escobar is coping,

The Story


Credit Megan Burks
San Diego State assistant professor and researcher Bill Zahner goes over a math problem with Hoover High School student Natalie Lopez, Jan. 30, 2017. Lopez is not an English learner.


Teaching Math Helps Break Language Barriers

Math is a universal language but for English learners, math textbooks and standardized tests aren’t so universal.  Megan Burks of KPBS reports San Diego teachers are removing language barriers so students who haven’t mastered English can still advance in math.

The Story


Credit Wendy Rigby/Texas Public Radio
Quitxt is a bilingual texting program designed to help people stop smoking


Bilingual “Chat Bots” Text Healthy Advice

What if your phone could help you quit smoking or lose weight? That’s the idea behind a new “chat bot” texting service created by San Antonio medical professionals and engineers.  PR's Wendy Rigby outlines a new bilingual way to use your mobile device to improve your health.

The Story


Credit Norma Martinez
Dee Lusk (left) and Eduardo Cavazos Garza (right)


Radio Aztlán:  The Barrio Meets A Prairie Home Companion

Public radio fans are familiar with A Prairie Home Companion, the weekly variety show made popular by Garrison Keillor with skits, musical guests, and fake ads. It has a very Midwestern sensibility.  Now take that concept and give it a South Texas twist. What you get is a ‘barrio-logically correct’ version that recently hit the stage in San Antonio. 

The Story

Norma Martinez can be reached at norma@tpr.org and on Twitter at @NormDog1