NIF Utilizes Documentary to Promote Immigration Dialogues

The National Issues Forums and public television are partnering to promote constructive conversations about American immigration, utilizing the 7-hour documentary mini-series "The New Americans" and NIF's issue books and other materials focusing on "The New Challenges of American Immigration: What Should We Do?" The mini-series will air on PBS stations nationwide March 29-31, 2004 (check local listings). Read full entry for opportunities to get involved!

A dynamic civic engagement campaign to involve citizens in constructive conversation at deliberative community forums, on-line, and in classrooms, is underway across the country. With resources prepared by the National Issues Forums, and its three public television outreach partners, ITVS, Active Voice, and Outreach Extensions, community organizations and public television stations are planning events, forums, and activities to precede the airing of the series, and to sustain dialogue well after the broadcast.

The New Challenges of American Immigration: What Should We Do?, is a National Issues Forums companion discussion guide to The New Americans. It is available now in both regular and abridged versions, along with a 12-minute starter videotape, and moderator guide. To order: Call 1-800-600-4060; or order electronically at

Community partnerships to conduct a spectrum of educational outreach activities for The New Americans are now in Arizona, California, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, S. Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin.

NIF forums and moderator training sessions for The New Americans are already taking place in many locales. Among these are Pittsburgh, PA, Austin, TX, Columbus, OH, West Palm Beach, FL, and statewide in Iowa.

NIF conveners and moderators are encouraged to use the The New Americans websites listed below to find out what is happening in their areas. You can join an existing grass-roots initiative or start your own.

For information about other resources and local activities go to Visitors to this website can use an interactive map to find out what activities are planned for their area, or to submit information about NIF forums they are convening.

For more information about The New Americans, go to The New Americans website at

You are encouraged to participate in this unique opportunity to engage citizens in deliberative forums on the immigration issue in conjunction with a ground breaking series about the search for the American Dream through the eyes of today?’s immigrants and refugees.

Questions? Contact Diane U. Eisenberg, NIF Associate, at ; (301-652-1901)

About The New Americans . . .

The New Americans follows diverse groups of immigrants over a three-year period, providing an intimate look at what it means to be a new American in the 21st century. The documentary from Kartemquin Films, the producers of Hoop Dreams, accompanies newcomers from five areas of the world - - before leaving their countries of origin through dramatic first years in the U.S. - - putting a human face on the phenomenon of globalization.

Added January 28, 2004