Erica Pearson

Erica Pearson is a reporter at the New York Daily News, where she covers immigration and immigrant issues. Locally, she works to show how immigration policy affects New Yorkers – but her stories have also included reporting from Haiti in the 2010 earthquake’s aftermath and covering the Ecuadoran funeral for a Brooklyn hate-crime victim. A Wisconsin native, she is a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Before joining the News, she worked as an editor and reporter at amNewYork and the public policy website GothamGazette.com.

 

 

Project Story

Undocumented activists throwing their voices

Brooklyn coffee shop worker Wendell Toro has never cast a ballot, even though he has been eligible to vote for six years.

He didn’t think it would matter.

But this summer, Toro, 25, decided to register after a buddy from junior high school — undocumented Mexican immigrant Carlos Vargas — asked him to vote for President Obama on his behalf.

“I know I can vote and I know I don’t care about it,” said Toro, a U.S. citizen from Puerto Rico. “I’d rather give my vote to Carlos and let him get his word across than me just being silent, letting the world spin.”

Vargas, 26, came to New York when he was 4 years old and is as passionate about politics as Toro is apathetic.

He’s one of the organizers of an undocumented youth campaign called Su Voz Mi Voto or “Their voice my vote” that is trying to goad some of the estimated 8 million eligible but unregistered Latino voters into casting a ballot, one personal connection at a time.

“We figured out a lot of our friends and family are citizens, and they do have the power to vote,” said Vargas, who lives on Staten Island. “We do have a voice — and we have a voice through our relatives and friends.”

http://articles.nydailynews.com/2012-08-11/news/33156966_1_latino-vote-somos-america-youth-campaign

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