New Orleans Reconstruction Workers Fight to Remain

Immigration protesters amassed in front of the entrance to the ICE New Orleans Field Office at 1250 Poydras Street.Immigration protesters amassed in front of the entrance to the ICE New Orleans Field Office at 1250 Poydras Street. (Photo: Josh Rushing/Flickr)

Hurricane Katrina ripped through the Southern Gulf Coast. Drawn by reconstruction work, the number of Latino immigrants has nearly doubled. Workers were charged with pulling dead bodies from abandoned homes and rebuilding New Orleans. But the influx of migrant workers also increased immigration crackdowns.

Jasmin Lopez follows reconstruction worker, Jose Monterubio. He tells us about his detention and how he stands for immigrant rights with the support of Congress of Day Laborers. Jose Torres Tama recites “Corporate Coyotes Smuggle Immigrant Workers,” a poem from his book Immigrant Dreams, Alien Nightmares.