refugees

Updated at 10:45 p.m.

President Trump blasted a federal judge's decision to temporarily halt his revised travel ban on Wednesday night, telling a campaign rally in Nashville, Tenn., that he wished he had stood his ground and fought for his original, much stricter executive order.

WBFO's Mike Desmond

International Women's Day protestors marched from Buffalo City Hall to Tupper Street Wednesday, seeking a variety of legal changes and more equality in hiring and promotions.

Local agency and its Iranian employee face visa dilemma

Feb 22, 2017
Michael Mroziak, WBFO

President Trump is expected to issue a revised executive order that again seeks to restrict travel from seven mostly-Muslim nations. The administration's desired immigration policies are leaving one local resident, and her employers, wondering if she'll be allowed to stay in the United States when her student visa expires.

Updated 5:25 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is releasing more on its plans to crack down on illegal immigration, enforcing the executive orders President Trump issued in late January. Those orders called for increased border security and stricter enforcement of immigration laws.

The Department of Homeland Security issued the new rules on Tuesday, laid out in two documents signed by Secretary John Kelly.

WBFO News file photo

Several aid organizations and pro-immigrant groups are pressuring the Canadian government to pull out of a controversial program which turns away almost all refugees coming in through the United States.

Karen DeWitt

Some upstate lawmakers are asking the state to step in and fund refugee resettlement programs that they said have been caught up in President Donald Trump’s travel ban and the resulting chaos.


Two lawyers, three judges, thousands of ordinary Americans: On Tuesday night, oral arguments in Washington v. Trump attracted an unusually large audience for audio-only legal proceedings.

The case centers on President Trump's controversial executive order that would temporarily bar all new refugees from entering the U.S., as well as visa holders from seven majority-Muslim countries.

A federal appeals court denied President Trump's attempt to restore his travel ban on refugees and visa holders from seven majority-Muslim countries Sunday morning, sending people scrambling to board planes while it is legal once again for them to enter the country.

Refugees and immigrants in the Buffalo area met with attorneys and other experts Saturday at a question and answer session at Jericho Road on Barton Street.

Confer Plastics

North Tonawanda based Confer Plastics has expanded its product line and workforce with the help of low-cost hydropower.

The New York Civil Liberties Union says they and fellow legal advocates have representatives on the ground to assist anyone still affected by President Donald Trump's immigration orders, including the one barring entry from a selected set of nations that the White House considers terror breeding grounds. Meanwhile, local workshops are being planned to assist any new arrivals by advising them of their rights.


WBFO file photo

Local agencies who assist new arrivals to Buffalo from other parts of the world are joining the chorus of critics reacting to President Trump's recent executive order barring entry into the U.S. by people from a selection of nations that, according to the White House, are known terror breeding grounds.


Updated at 7 p.m. ET

By the time the sun rose on Sunday in the U.S., the chaotic weekend set in motion by Trump's executive order on immigration was beginning to give way to greater clarity — in some respects, at least.

Photo courtesy of Erin Heaney

Local people outraged by President Trump's order barring some immigrants and refugees from entering the country staged protests nationwide Saturday. They rallied at airports, including Buffalo Niagara International Airport. About 150 protesters held signs in support of welcoming refugees to our community.

WBFO file photos

After signing executive orders to pursue construction of a new wall along the Mexican border and to withhold federal grant money from cities harboring immigrants not living in the U.S. legally, President Donald Trump is expected to sign an order temporarily blocking entry into the U.S.  from several predominantly Muslim nations. A local elected leader who has encouraged the settlement of refugees and immigrants in Erie County calls Trump's stance "un-American."


Experts launch series aimed at helping entrepreneurs

Jan 16, 2017
Lisa Coppola

If you’ve ever launched a business or struggled to grow a new enterprise, you likely encountered numerous challenges.

WBFO's Mike Desmond

Carefully avoiding saying the words "Donald Trump," education activists Tuesday night said they are standing up for all children, no matter their race, origin, gender or national origin. The event was at Lafayette High School, where leaders reaffirmed safety, acceptance and diversity.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

A language specialist in the Buffalo Public school district says the biggest challenge for refugee students is communicating with their fellow classmates. But as WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley tells us, they are encouraged to preserve their native languages. 

Chris Caya/wbfo

Stories of hate crimes have been gathering more attention in the days since the Presidential election. The development is drawing a strong response from Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. "We have to stand tall. We have to speak out," Gillibrand said during a Tuesday appearance in Buffalo.


Heritage Moments: Land of newcomers, always arriving

Sep 26, 2016
Album pamiatkow: A Guide to Buffalo’s Polonia from 1906, Digital Collections, University Libraries, University at Buffalo.

Grant Street -- a Buffalo that would have been unthinkable a couple of generations ago: women dressed in head-to-toe robes, men in long shirts, children speaking a Babel of languages. After English and Spanish, the most spoken languages in Buffalo’s public schools are Karen, Arabic, Nepali, Burmese and Somali; at Lafayette High School, students speak 42 different languages.


Karibu News

The challenges that refugees and immigrants confront have been well-documented.

WBFO News File Photo / WBFO News

A civil war that began in the late 1980's drove Somalis and Bantus from their home in Africa.

Rich Kellman

The global refugee crisis has been hitting home in many communities around the world, including in Buffalo. One of the biggest challenges facing immigrants involves learning a new language and local organizations are ready to help. WBFO contributor Rich Kellman has their story.


Michael Mroziak, WBFO

They work on the front lines in Central Europe's refugee crisis. They recently arrived in Buffalo for a visit to learn how refugees are assisted and settled here, hoping to bring some of the lessons back to their respective homelands.


Brian Meyer/WBFO News

A newspaper that serves the region's growing immigrant and refugee populations has published a primer for new Americans that highlights the voting process. A recent edition of Karibu News featured a two-page spread in three languages. It's an effort to encourage naturalized citizens to head to the polls and to spur discussion among those who cannot vote. WBFO's Brian Meyer sat down with publisher Rubens Mukunzi, a Rwandan immigrant who moved to Buffalo three years ago.


Forum focuses on refugee challenges, misconceptions

Feb 3, 2016
Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Addressing the myths about refugees. That was the focus of a panel discussion held Tuesday at Daemen College, where an audience of nearly 200 people heard about the challenges facing immigrants, including just how hard it is to achieve asylum status in the U.S.


Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Erie County lawmakers hosted a 90-minute meeting Thursday morning to gather information and address concerns about Syrian refugees that are expected to arrive in the near future.

WBFO News file photo

Every day, an increasing number of new Americans from nations, geographic areas, and language groups walk into the court buildings in downtown Buffalo and come to grips with the legal system. Often, they are from countries with no functioning legal system or one which they say can't be trusted.


Google Maps

Increasingly, the people coming into our courts reflect the changing face of America and of Western New York. They include people from across the world, some of whom speak languages which don't even exist in a written form but are in our community and in our schools.


If you want to see how refugees are changing Buffalo, N.Y., the West Side Bazaar is a good place to start. It's an incubator for immigrant-owned businesses. And it's the only place in town where you can eat Ethiopian sponge bread, Burmese noodles and Peruvian chicken at the same table. It's also a market with clothing and gifts.

"We are like family here — families from different countries," says Nadeen Yousef, who moved to Buffalo from Iraq last year. Yousef now has a booth at the bazaar, where she sells handmade macrame wall hangings and art.

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