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FRONTERAS: Undocumented Parents Arrested In Hospital; Deportation Fears Threaten Health Care

John Burnett/NPR

This week on Fronteras: 

  •  Border patrol agents arrest two undocumented parents in a South Texas hospital where their son needed emergency surgery.
  •  The element of fear is preventing undocumented families from getting the healthcare they need.
  •  A national refugee resettlement agency makes changes after an investigation shows families in San Diego were encouraged to falsify their rental applications.
  •  A vacant, historic theater in San Antonio that means a lot to Latinos may get a rebirth.


Border Agents Arrest Undocumented Parents As Their Child Awaits Surgery

Arrests of undocumented immigrants in normally taboo places are raising concerns about how far the Trump Administration will go to apprehend them.  U.S. immigration enforcement agents have had a long standing policy that certain places are off limits for arresting people who are in this country illegally – no schools, no hospitals.  But that’s not the case anymore.  NPR’s John Burnett this week broke the story of a family who was followed by agents to a children’s hospital in south Texas.  Border patrol agents then arrested the parents while their infant son awaited emergency surgery.  This situation and several others have many worried about a new normal under President Trump’s immigration crackdown.

​John Burnett's story first aired Wednesday, September 20th, on NPR's All Things Considered.

The Story




Credit Stephanie Kuo/KERA News
Employees at Jefferson Dental Clinic in Dallas have to reassure patients who are undocumented that they are safe. Many undocumented immigrants are forgoing health care out of fear of deportation.


Deportation Fear Keeps Undocumented Immigrants From Getting Healthcare

From Senate Bill 4, which bans so-called sanctuary cities, to the ending of DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, undocumented families in Texas say they fear being deported. That fear keeps many from feeling safe outside their homes -- and some are skipping appointments with doctors and dentists. As KERA’s Stephanie Kuo reports, that has major implications for the health of immigrant communities.

The Story


Credit Photo by Megan Wood / inewsource
Three beds fill one bedroom that's shared by Syrian refugee Mohamad Abdullah's six children in his family's two-bedroom El Cajon apartment, July 25, 2017. One of the children sleeps on a smaller mattress (not pictured) on the floor.


Refugee Resettlement Agency Seeks New Leadership After Investigation

Sometimes resettlement agencies have a hard time securing housing for refugees. Two months ago, a KPBS investigation discovered the San Diego branch of the International Rescue Committee had refugees fudging the number of family members on rental applications to help them get apartments. Now the San Diego office is looking for new leadership after IRC national headquarters found problems with this practice. Taryn Mento of KPBS has an update.

The Story


Credit Jack Morgan
Alameda Theatre

  Historic San Antonio Theater Has Special Meaning For Latinos

Vacant for 30 years, downtown San Antonio's Alameda Theater may be reborn in the coming years and to some, the structure has a value that's hard to quantify in just dollars and cents. TPR’s Jack Morgan explains.

The Story


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