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Day Laborers

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OPINION
September 21, 2011
Redondo Beach has spent nearly a decade defending a misguided 1986 city ordinance that bans day laborers from soliciting work from public sidewalks, alleys, medians or highways. Lawyers for the city say the law is designed to stop individuals from spilling out into traffic while looking for work and jeopardizing public safety. A district court tossed out the ordinance as an unconstitutional restriction of free speech. City officials persisted with a legal appeal, ignoring previous trial court decisions overturning similar laws, and instead arguing that the measure doesn't seek to limit what people say on public sidewalks, just how they behave.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 8, 2014 | By Emily Alpert Reyes
The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to plug a financing gap that threatened community programs once paid for with federal dollars, devoting more than $1.9 million in reserves to help sustain programs that include neighborhood beautification and youth activities. The city has scrambled to figure out how to keep a host of programs running after the Department of Housing and Urban Development told the city it was violating rules governing federal grants, spending more of the federal funding than allowed on “public services.” To make sure that federal money for community redevelopment and renovation doesn't end up paying mainly for public services that cities would ordinarily cover on their own, federal rules cap the percentage of grant money that can be used for those kinds of services.
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OPINION
March 29, 2011
For more than two decades, California cities have gone to court to settle tensions between residents and day laborers who solicit work from public sidewalks. The issue is now before the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. This particular case involves a 1989 Redondo Beach ordinance that bans individuals from standing on streets, sidewalks, curbs, alleys, highways or medians to solicit or attempt to solicit employment, business or contributions from drivers. At the same time, it prohibits motorists from stopping in traffic or parking to hire someone.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 14, 2014 | By Cindy Chang
As the California Department of Motor Vehicles prepares for a historic expansion of driving privileges, some immigrants may be left out because they lack documents proving who they are or where they live. The DMV is hiring about 1,000 workers and opening five temporary offices to handle a flood of driver's license applications beginning Jan. 1, 2015, from immigrants without legal status. In a few months, the agency will issue regulations on the documents required to obtain the new license.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 21, 1997
One need look no further than the pages of The Times to enjoy one of the minor ironies of urban life. Consider the plight of the lowly day laborer, risking arrest or deportation to gain a few hours' wages. Unlike the onramp mendicants, they truly are willing to work for food. Compare these folks with the recipients of General Relief, who are verily coerced to work, and are provided the job, the equipment, bathrooms, and of course, the disdain of their fellow public workers. If you were going to hire a willing worker, whom would you choose?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2010 | By Esmeralda Bermudez
Never did the day laborers vying for work along an oil-stained Home Depot parking lot expect an offer like this. Two directors -- carrying clipboards and a camera for profile shots -- showed up with a pitch fit for a wannabe L.A. actor: A big foundation gave money to form a traveling theater company, and day laborers would be cast for the roles. It wasn't exactly the paid job they hoped for, but at least there would be free dinner, a bus pass and a chance to see new cities.
NATIONAL
March 4, 2013 | By Cindy Carcamo
TUCSON -- Arizona's sweeping anti-illegal-immigration law suffered another blow Monday when the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals sided with day laborers looking for work in the state. A three-judge appellate panel unanimously upheld a lower court injunction that prevents the state from enforcing a part of SB 1070 that would prohibit motorists from stopping traffic to solicit day laborers. Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, considered the decision a disappointment, her spokesman said in a prepared statement.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 9, 2010 | By Carol J. Williams, Los Angeles Times
Redondo Beach city officials can prohibit day laborers from soliciting work from motorists, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday in a case that has been eyed by other cities that have sought similar restrictions. A lower court four years ago had ruled that the city's ordinance banning solicitation from the street infringed on laborers' free speech rights. Wednesday's 2-to-1 decision from the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that ruling. The city has been engaged in a legal tug-of-war with day laborers for more than 40 years, said Michael Webb of the Redondo Beach city attorney's office.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 4, 1995
In light of the current controversy over immigration, I was astounded at the editorial titled "Day Laborers Get a Place to Congregate" (May 28). The editorial explained how Huntington Beach, following the lead of other Orange County cities, was establishing a job center for day laborers. What perplexed me was that the writer at no time indicated who these day laborers were. It appears that The Times and many of our politicians, including Gov. Wilson, are unwilling to face the fact that immigrants make a significant contribution to the underground economy of California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 21, 2012 | By Paloma Esquivel, Los Angeles Times
The way Omar Sierra remembers it, dozens of day laborers gathered in the Kmart parking lot that day more than 15 years ago. A county mobile health clinic arrived with a mariachi band and free food and offered HIV tests to those waiting for work. Sierra got in line and sat for his test. He heard a commotion, turned and saw men running. He thought someone was offering a job and wondered whether he should go with them. Then he saw the immigration agents. And he ran as fast as he could.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 3, 2013 | By Howard Blume
Tuesday was the first day of school -- again -- in Southern California. The day after Labor Day was long the traditional start of the school year, but some school systems began earlier this year, including Los Angeles Unified, the nation's second-largest, which welcomed students back Aug. 13. But count Long Beach Unified among the traditionalists. It started, per custom, on the Tuesday after Labor Day. For Westchester Secondary Charter School, Tuesday marked the first day ever.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 16, 2013 | By Ruben Vives
A 38-year-old homeless man suspected of fatally setting a man on fire outside a Long Beach 7-Eleven has pleaded not guilty to capital murder. Raymond Sean Clark stood behind the inmate holding cell and was not visible to reporters as Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James D. Otto read him the charges. Clark is charged with special circumstance murder and arson causing great bodily injury in the Friday attack that killed Jerry Payne, 63. No bail was set for Clark, who remains in police custody.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 16, 2013 | By Marisa Gerber
For Jose Cruz, a 33-year-old day laborer from Guatemala, getting all the benefits of citizenship is not as important as being able to live, work and drive in the U.S. without the fear of deportation. "My main concern today, is having a job. That's the pan de cada dia (our daily bread)," said Cruz, who spent Tuesday at a Southland Home Depot hoping to find work. "I can wait for everything else. " His friend, Javier Gonzalez, a fellow day laborer who plans to return to his wife and four kids in Acapulco soon, chimed in to remind Cruz of the prospective timetable: "You want to wait 13 years?"
NATIONAL
March 4, 2013 | By Cindy Carcamo
TUCSON -- Arizona's sweeping anti-illegal-immigration law suffered another blow Monday when the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals sided with day laborers looking for work in the state. A three-judge appellate panel unanimously upheld a lower court injunction that prevents the state from enforcing a part of SB 1070 that would prohibit motorists from stopping traffic to solicit day laborers. Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, considered the decision a disappointment, her spokesman said in a prepared statement.
BUSINESS
April 2, 2012 | By Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times
With airfares to Europe on the rise, it looks like Americans are planning to rediscover the good ol' U.S.A. this summer. As a result, perhaps more Americans will use the opportunity to visit some of the country's landmarks such as the Alamo and the Grand Canyon that sometimes get overlooked. Summer airfares to Europe have climbed about 11% compared with last summer, according to travel website Kayak, which attributes the jump to airlines trying to cash in on travelers visiting the London Olympics starting in July.
BUSINESS
February 22, 2012 | By Alana Semuels, Los Angeles Times
Union membership is on the wane, but not at the Vermont Carwash and Nava's Carwash in South Los Angeles. The two businesses have agreed to collective bargaining agreements with their workers, who are members of the United Steelworkers union. Wages at the firms will be $8.16 an hour, organizers said, an increase of about 2%. There are now believed to be three union carwashes in the country, with Santa Monica's Bonus Carwash becoming the first last year. But if union leaders are able to stem — let alone reverse — years of declining membership, it will take the allegiance of these kinds of low-wage workers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 21, 2012 | By Paloma Esquivel, Los Angeles Times
The way Omar Sierra remembers it, dozens of day laborers gathered in the Kmart parking lot that day more than 15 years ago. A county mobile health clinic arrived with a mariachi band and free food and offered HIV tests to those waiting for work. Sierra got in line and sat for his test. He heard a commotion, turned and saw men running. He thought someone was offering a job and wondered whether he should go with them. Then he saw the immigration agents. And he ran as fast as he could.
OPINION
September 21, 2011
Redondo Beach has spent nearly a decade defending a misguided 1986 city ordinance that bans day laborers from soliciting work from public sidewalks, alleys, medians or highways. Lawyers for the city say the law is designed to stop individuals from spilling out into traffic while looking for work and jeopardizing public safety. A district court tossed out the ordinance as an unconstitutional restriction of free speech. City officials persisted with a legal appeal, ignoring previous trial court decisions overturning similar laws, and instead arguing that the measure doesn't seek to limit what people say on public sidewalks, just how they behave.
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