Colorlines

Seth Freed Wessler

Seth Freed Wessler
Seth Freed Wessler Investigative Reporter
New York, NY

Seth Freed Wessler is a reporter in New York who currently writes for Colorlines.com. Seth has reported from across the United States, Mexico and the Caribbean on immigration, the safety net, criminal justice, national security and the human fallout of the financial collapse. Seth led a groundbreaking investigation that revealed the thousands of U.S. citizen children stuck in foster care whose parents have been detained or deported by federal immigration authorities. The investigation, for which Seth won a Hillman Prize and other honors, Along with Seth's series of follow-up stories, led to a direct response from the federal government, as well as the passage of state-level legislation. Seth worked until 2012 as a researcher for the Applied Research Center, where he authored research reports on racial inequality and the financial collapse, segregation in the restaurant industry and the corrosive effects of immigration policies on child welfare systems. Seth often discusses his reporting in national broadcast, and his stories and investigations for Colorlines have been cited by outlets including the Associated Press, the New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and NPR. He has produced stories for GOOD Magazine, the Texas Observer, NPR’s LatinoUSA, The Huffington Post, The Root and other outlets. In addition to the Hillman Prize, Seth was a finalist for a Casey Medal and has won several Ippies Awards. He was the recipient of a reporting fellowship from USC Annenberg's Institute for Justice and Journalism. Check out Seth's media appearances here.

Seth tweets at @sethfw.

DREAM Act in Senate Bill Includes No Age Cap and Faster Path to Citizenship

DREAM Act in Senate Bill Includes No Age Cap and Faster Path to Citizenship

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 17 2013, 10:25AM

The Senate Immigration bill includes a broad DREAM Act provisions with no upper age limit.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

Immigration Bill Includes Protections for Families Broken Up by Deportation

Immigration Bill Includes Protections for Families Broken Up by Deportation

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 17 2013, 10:06AM

The bill takes some important steps to reunite families and stop children of deportees from entering foster care, a problem uncovered in a Colorlines investigation.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

The Senate Immigration Bill Has Arrived! Here Are Its Basics

The Senate Immigration Bill Has Arrived! Here Are Its Basics

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 17 2013, 8:41AM

Post #1 on the bill’s 844 pages. We’ll comb through the details for answers to the big questions: Who gets citizenship, how and what new enforcement powers come in return.

Topics: Immigration, Immigration Reform, /NOW

Senate Drops Immigration Bill Summary, Will Let Some Deportees Return

Senate Drops Immigration Bill Summary, Will Let Some Deportees Return

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 16 2013, 10:28AM

Deportees who are the parents or spouses of U.S. citizens or permanent residents could apply to return. The same is true for some deported DREAMers.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

History Would Repeat Itself If Boston Derailed Immigration Reform

History Would Repeat Itself If Boston Derailed Immigration Reform

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 16 2013, 7:52AM

American lawmakers have generally responded to acts of mass violence, whether by U.S. citizens or foreigners, with anti-immigration laws and a retreat from reform.

Topics: Boston Bombing, Immigration, Immigration Reform, National Security

Big Win? Senate Immigration Bill May Let Some Deportees Return

Big Win? Senate Immigration Bill May Let Some Deportees Return

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 15 2013, 5:32PM

In a huge, unexpected victory, sources familiar with the soon-to-be-released Senate immigration reform bill say it may allow some deportees to return to their families in the U.S.

Topics: Immigration, Immigration Reform, /NOW

Sen. Rubio Backs Immigration Reform Bill With 'Toughest Enforcement'

Sen. Rubio Backs Immigration Reform Bill With ‘Toughest Enforcement’

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 15 2013, 10:24AM

Sen. Marco Rubio performed a seven stop, bi-lingual TV blitz on Sunday to trumpet the Gang of Eight immigration reform bill. He described a highly restrictive piece of legislation that he hopes fellow Republicans will support.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

How an Immigration Bill Could Become Law

How an Immigration Bill Could Become Law

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 14 2013, 10:12AM

A little racial justice School House Rocks.

Topics: Immigration, Immigration Reform, /NOW

Senate Immigration Bill Will Shut Out Same-Sex Couples

Senate Immigration Bill Will Shut Out Same-Sex Couples

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 10 2013, 11:27AM

The immigration reform bill from the Senate Gang of Eight appears unlikely to include language that would allow gay and lesbian citizens to petition for green cards for their non-citizen partners.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

Immigration Reform, But Not Health Care For Immigrants?

Immigration Reform, But Not Health Care For Immigrants?

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 9 2013, 2:12PM

Conservatives are fighting over the fiscal costs of immigration reform. But what will the GOP influence on a bill mean for low income immigrants?

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

NYPD Has Changed 'Nothing' About Muslim Spying Program

NYPD Has Changed ‘Nothing’ About Muslim Spying Program

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 8 2013, 1:10PM

New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says that the city has changed nothing about it’s controversial program to spy in Muslims communities.

Topics: National Security, /NOW

New York City's Fast Food Workers Walk Out

New York City’s Fast Food Workers Walk Out

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 4 2013, 2:47PM

On the 45th anniversary of MLK’s assassination, New York City fast food workers tell Colorlines.com why they’re went on strike to demand higher wage and better working conditions.

Topics: Economy, /NOW

What Rubio Really Wants on Immigration Reform Is Control

What Rubio Really Wants on Immigration Reform Is Control

by Seth Freed Wessler on April 2 2013, 12:06PM

We’ve long known a bill will be released in the Senate next week, so why does Marco Rubio suddenly want to look like a spoiler?

Topics: Immigration, Immigration Reform, /NOW

Immigration Reform May Throw Siblings Under the Bus

Immigration Reform May Throw Siblings Under the Bus

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 26 2013, 6:00AM

Everyone knows the current immigration system is broken. For brothers and sisters waiting for family visas, the way some lawmakers hope to fix it could make things even worse.

Topics: Immigration Reform

Video Exclusive: David Floyd on Why He Sued NYPD Play

Video Exclusive: David Floyd on Why He Sued NYPD

by Seth Freed Wessler, Jay Smooth on March 25 2013, 6:00AM

Hours before he left the country for medical school, Colorlines.com caught up with David Floyd, the man who put his name on the biggest stop and frisk suit around. Here’s why he put himself on the line for this federal case.

Topics: Criminal Justice, Stop and Frisk

Felipe Montes Departs the United States for Mexico, With His Children

Felipe Montes Departs the United States for Mexico, With His Children

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 22 2013, 12:24PM

After two years of separation, a deported father took his children to Mexico today.

Topics: /NOW

Deported Father Who Returned To U.S. Makes Final Plea To Remain

Deported Father Who Returned To U.S. Makes Final Plea To Remain

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 21 2013, 8:57AM

Felipe Montes, who lost his kids to foster care when he was deported, is now asking ICE for permission to stay in the U.S.

Topics: Immigration, /NOW

Alabama Republican Congressman Says Obama 'Overusing' ICE Detention

Alabama Republican Congressman Says Obama ‘Overusing’ ICE Detention

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 19 2013, 3:25PM

Alabama Republican Rep. Spencer Bachus said that the Obama administration is detaining too many people in immigration detention.

Topics: Immigration Reform, /NOW

On 'Gideon's' 50th, a Crisis in Public Defense Deepens Racial Inequality

On ‘Gideon’s’ 50th, a Crisis in Public Defense Deepens Racial Inequality

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 18 2013, 9:30AM

Fifty years ago today, “Gideon v. Wainwright” locked in poor peoples’ right to court-appointed counsel. Too bad the public defense system it wrought has failed to keep pace with drug-war policies that have led to the mass incarceration of black and brown people.

Topics: Criminal Justice

Black Lawmakers Demand an End to Prison-to-Deportation Pipeline

Black Lawmakers Demand an End to Prison-to-Deportation Pipeline

by Seth Freed Wessler on March 13 2013, 10:09AM

Despite the alleged wall between African Americans and black immigrants, the CBC has made immigration reform a priority this year. The caucus has joined grassroots advocates in their demand for a new migration system and an end to the prison-to-deportation pipeline

Topics: Immigration Reform