This week the public radio program Making Contact features a story by Feet in Two Worlds reporter Valeria Fernández about the impact of an immigration raid on a family in Phoenix, Arizona. Valeria wrote the following reporter’s notebook about her experiences covering this story. You can listen to the story pressing “play” below or to find a station near you that carries the program click here.[audio:http://media.libsyn.com/media/radioproject/MakingCon_091021_Ax.mp3]
PHOENIX, Arizona — When I arrived at Katherine Figueroa’s house, it had only been two days since her parents –both undocumented immigrants– were arrested during a raid by Maricopa County sheriff’s deputies at the Phoenix car wash where they both worked.
Kathy is an outspoken 9-year-old who makes friends easily. She welcomes people with her easy smile, even those she has just met. She was born in the U.S. and like many children of undocumented parents she has lived in constant fear that her parents could be deported.
I knew this wasn’t going to be an ordinary story. It was going to be one I would follow for months, and very closely every week.
It’s the story behind news reports that people in the Phoenix area have grown accustomed to: another sweep, another immigration raid in Maricopa County. It is about what happens to communities and families impacted by a crackdown that has made Arizona ground zero in a divisive national debate over immigration.