A little girl holds her mother's hand at a 2017 demonstration for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in Nashville. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Refugee study panel seeks ‘transparency’ in placement of unaccompanied children

BY: - January 31, 2022

Lawmakers serving on a specially convened committee acknowledge the transport and placement of unaccompanied refugee children lies with the federal government, but they still want Tennessee to be part of the equation. Some legislators, however, wonder whether the outcome was worth the effort. After some eight months of study, the Joint Study Committee on Refugee […]

A renter waits outside Davidson County General Sessions Court in November, waiting to see if she can work out a deal with her landlord to stay in her apartment.(Photo: John Partipilo)

New year, same old evictions

BY: - January 21, 2022

As a new year begins, so does another wave of evictions, and for those seeking to prevent homelessness among Nashville’s most vulnerable populations, existing problems continue as well. As the year 2021 sputtered to an end, Nashville’s court system closed for the holidays, as did Judge Rachel Bell’s Housing Resource Diversionary Court Program. Bell’s court […]

Two Amish men continue their routine of delivering milk, while an American flag flies at half staff. (Photo: John Partipilo)

The year in photos: Part Two

BY: , and - December 30, 2021

In our second gallery of photographs that defined 2020, we share works by photojournalists John Partipilo and Karen Pulfer Focht on topics including the environment, families with special needs children and immigration issues. While 2021 wasn’t characterized by the same type of demonstrations that marked 2020, the year nonetheless had its share of demonstrations by […]

A workers at El Hornito bakery in Nashville arranges cakes on the business' seventh anniversary. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Tennessee’s Hispanic residents have borne brunt of COVID-19 pandemic

BY: - December 21, 2021

On Sunday, staff at El Hornitos Bakery in Nashville celebrated their seventh year in operation knowing they are among the Latino businesses that survived a pandemic that has devastated the community.  It’s been nearly two years since COVID-19 spread among Nashville’s Latino residents, and as the months ensued, El Hornitos owner Luis Rojas, noticed more […]

Congress was alerted last year to the problems at the detention center by a whistleblower, Dawn Wooten, a nurse who worked at the Irwin County Detention Cente

Investigation urged of doctor who operated on immigrant women in detention

BY: - December 7, 2021

WASHINGTON — Two congressional panels are calling for Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas to investigate a doctor who was accused of performing gynecological procedures on immigrant women in a Georgia detention center without their consent or full understanding of the treatment being performed. In a Dec. 3 letter, Democrats on the House Homeland Security […]

Armando Arzate speaks out about how workers are abused as Cecilla Prado of Workers Dignity translates. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Immigrant groups address abuse of undocumented workers

BY: - December 7, 2021

Armando Arzate has lived and worked in Nashville for 22 years but said his documentation status allowed his employers to take advantage of him, and Tennessee law offered him few protections from retaliation if he complained.  Since then he’s joined Worker’s Dignity, an organization that supports low wage workers and working class residents, to represent […]

Shelby County Commission. (Photo: Shelby County Government)

Shelby commission approves funds for refugee legal aid

BY: - December 6, 2021

The 25 Afghan refugees now living in Memphis need protection from deportation and the sooner they get legal protection, the better, said lawyers with a non profit legal organization. On Monday, the Shelby County Commission awarded $250,000 to the Community Legal Center to assist Afghan refugees in applying for permanent residence in the U.S. As […]

Children in Nashville during a recent rally. Memphis has received about 36 Afghan refugees while Nashville has received around 300. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Shelby Commission group recommends funds for Afghan refugees

BY: - December 1, 2021

Afghan refugees who fled their home country under Taliban rule still face deportation, said lawyers during a Shelby County Commission meeting. On Wednesday, members of the Community Legal Center met with commissioners at a committee meeting to discuss the funds they need to provide legal services to 36 Afghan refugees resettling in Memphis.  After the […]

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

FedEx added to ongoing lawsuit against cleaning contractor over Latina worker sexual abuse claims

BY: - November 24, 2021

Memphis-based FedEx has been added as a defendant in an ongoing lawsuit brought against a janitorial services contractor at its Nashville and Mount Juliet facilities by two Latina women workers who claim they and others among a largely female, immigrant workforce were subjected to sexual exploitation by a supervisor. The lawsuit was filed in May […]

(Photo illustration by John Partipilo.)

Lawsuits pile up against former funeral director

BY: and - November 3, 2021

Lawsuits continue to pile up against four funeral homes and an ex-funeral director accused of failing to send the remains of deceased immigrants back to their families overseas for burial. On Monday, the family of Ramon Lara Castillo — a 63-year-old Nashville house painter who succumbed to liver cancer in October 2020 — filed a […]

Afghan-American residents of Nashville, photographed during a recent rally, will help refugees as the settle in the area. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Middle Tennessee groups prepare for Afghan refugee arrivals

BY: - October 25, 2021

Middle Tennessee refugee resettlement programs need all the help they can get to properly welcome Afghan refugees coming to Nashville At least 300 Afghan refugees will arrive at the Nashville International airport in the next few months and several nonprofit organizations—United Way of Greater Nashville, Catholic Charities of Tennessee, the Nashville International Center for Empowerment […]

‘This is injustice’: Dickerson Pike mobile home tenants fight eviction

BY: - October 8, 2021

Juana Cecilia has lived on Dickerson Pike for 17 years but faces losing her home after developers took an interest in her trailer park neighborhood.   In June, she and 19 other families received eviction notices giving them less than two months to find a new home.  They later learned that their neighborhood was being sold […]