Reynaldo Leanos Jr.
Reynaldo Leanos Jr. is a freelance multimedia journalist living in New York City. His work has been featured on PRI's Global Nation and The World, NPR's Latino USA, NBC Latino and KUT's Texas Standard. He is from the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas near the Mexico border, where he reported on immigration on the southern border and Latino culture.
Reynaldo graduated from Texas State University in San Marcos, where he studied journalism and international studies. He is now studying at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and specializing in international reporting.
Some 100,000 people passed through the state’s four immigrant detention centers last year. The Dignity Not Detention bill will have to wait for the federal government to decide if it wants private companies detaining people.
The “melon strike” of 1966 paved the way for farmworkers in Texas — and Mexican Americans in general — to stand up for their rights. But many young people have never heard of it.
In the wake of the US Department of Justice deciding to end its relationship with private prisons, Homeland Security is considering a similar move. But whether it will happen is far from certain.
“Sometimes I’d like to imprison the immigration officials, the judge, the president, so that they can endure 19 days in there with their children,” says one woman who was recently released from immigration detention.