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 […]

Afghan-Americans rallied in Nashville to urge the American government to push for human rights protections in Afghanistan. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Tennessee’s Afghan residents rally for support

BY: - September 27, 2021

On Sunday, about a hundred protesters crowded in front of the Estes Kefauver Federal Building and Courthouse in Nashville to advocate for their friends and family currently living under Taliban rule.  Zahra Rasuli, 23, stood among several women wearing hijabs, pondering on the nature of Afghanistan’s conflict ridden history. She is a product of immigrant […]


Commentary: Decades-long promise of citizenship needs to become reality

BY: - September 27, 2021

For decades, the Tennessee Immigration and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) has organized for a pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented Americans. Now, the Biden-Harris administration has the opportunity to take bold action and uphold their promise to bring much needed relief for 11 million undocumented families who call the United States home. Right now, […]

The exterior of TIRRC's new building explodes with colorful murals. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Tennessee immigration advocates head to DC to urge pathway to citizenship

BY: - September 20, 2021

On Sunday, immigrant-rights advocates were disheartened to learn that a pathway to citizenship for thousands of immigrants in Tennessee was excluded from the congressional Democrats $3.5 trillion social policy budget. Earlier this month, the Democratic Party began the push to expand the nation’s social safety net focused on health care, child and elder care, education […]

Gov. Bill Lee addressing members of the Tennessee National Guard. (Photo:

Governor signs letter to Biden requesting border ‘crisis’ discussion

BY: - September 20, 2021

Gov. Bill Lee joined 25 Republican governors Monday in sending a letter to President Joe Biden seeking a meeting to resolve the “crisis” at the Southern border where tens of thousands of Haitians and people of other nations are gathered to enter the United States. “As we surpass the eight-month mark of a relentless and […]

Poppy Thorne, age two and a half, hugs Jana Bahloul. Jana's father, Osama Bahloul, is imam at the Islamic Center of Nashville. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Nashville Muslims mark 9-11 anniversary by aiding new refugees to U.S.

BY: - September 11, 2021

Sept. 11 holds special significance for all Americans, including the Muslim community.  Among the crowded sidewalks of 12th Avenue South, the Islamic Center of Nashville stands seemingly in contemplation of how life drastically changed the 2001 day radical terrorists flew two commercial planes onto the World Trade Center, killing nearly 3,000 people.  Behind the mosque, […]

A woman winces as she gets her COVID-19 vaccine during a pop-up clinic at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in South Nashville. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Low Latino vaccination rates in Shelby County prompt concern

BY: - September 3, 2021

Low vaccination rates in Shelby County’s Latino community drew a plea from a representative of the Mexican Consulate at Thursday’s media briefing by the Shelby County COVID-19 Task Force.  “The [COVID] vaccines are safe, ethical, convenient, save lives and are safe, said Rodolfo Qulantan Arenas of the Little Rock, Arkansas consulate. “You don’t have to […]

Tennessee House of Representatives (Photo: John Partipilo)

State lawmakers look to levy punishments on those aiding undocumented immigrants

BY: - August 13, 2021

Lawmakers speculated Thursday on how the state can further regulate companies providing services to undocumented immigrants under federal contracts and if the state can levy stricter punishments on those aiding undocumented immigrants.  The questions came during a meeting of the Joint Study Committee on Refugee Issues, which was formed after a group of migrant children […]

Saddler Funeral Home in Lebanon, where Reid Van Ness stored bodies for months at a time. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Second lawsuit filed against unlicensed funeral director and two funeral homes

BY: - August 4, 2021

A second lawsuit has been filed against two Middle Tennessee funeral homes and a Tennessee funeral director who lost his licenses for failing to send bodies of deceased immigrants overseas for burial. Filemon Dominguez Diaz died in November, 2019.  After his death, an acquaintance, Domingo Carlin Sanchez, contacted Diaz’s sister, Martha Angelica Dominguez Torres, to […]

Protesters in front of U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexanders offices on West End in 2017. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Texas ruling on DACA dashes hopes in Tennessee

BY: - July 27, 2021

On July 16, a Texas federal judge ruled that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program was illegal, and although DACA recipients have learned to live with uncertainty, many were still heart broken. Nashville DACA recipient Nathalia Castro had to think carefully about  pursuing higher education, knowing that the DACA program still faces legal challenges. […]

State Sen. Todd Gardenhire, R-Chattanooga, center, has expressed suspicion about the suspension of the Baptiste Group. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Chattanooga center for immigrant children sues state over license suspension

BY: - July 20, 2021

The Chattanooga organization that runs a short-term center for immigrant children sued the state Tuesday, seeking to have its license reinstated, after the Department of Children’s Services suspended it over allegations of sexual misconduct. Baptiste Group, which runs La Casa de Sidney, and holds a contract with the federal government to accept immigrant children until […]