Spectrum News examines the recent crackdown on immigration and its impact on the lives and businesses of immigrants in America, in the one-hour special, "Immigration in America."
NY1 gave New Yorkers a chance to sound off during a special town hall meeting at the CUNY Graduate Center in Midtown.
Here are the people we profile in "Immigration in America":
· We meet Ahed Festuk, a young Syrian activist fighting the Assad regime, who fled to the U.S. fearing for her life, and is now seeking asylum.
· In New York City we meet an undocumented worker hoping for a better life and a successful restaurateur who began as an undocumented worker and now proudly proclaims on every receipt that "Your meal was prepared by immigrants," a workforce that's critical to the restaurant industry.
· It's time for strawberry harvest in Florida, and we meet several undocumented workers who risk everything to pick the crops and make a living for their families and the farmers whose livelihood depend on those migrant workers.
· In Brooklyn we meet several immigrant doctors who have committed themselves to serving patients in our inner cities. Up to 20 percent of the physician workforce is comprised of immigrants who come to the U.S. on a J1 or H1B visa, and the nation's health care system is increasingly dependent on immigrant doctors.
· A woman whose mother brought her here when she was five, is now, because of the Dream Act, able to have a social security number, health insurance, and a job. Her mother is not that fortunate.
· In Upstate NY we meet members of an immigrant population that is flocking to cities like Utica, Syracuse and Buffalo. After losing jobs and population for decades due to shifts in manufacturing, these cities are now being re-vitalized as immigrants and refugees bring extended families and start new businesses.