Thursday, May 02, 2013

LA Times Drops 'Illegal Immigrant,' 'Undocumented Immigrant'

LA Times Drops 'Illegal Immigrant,' 'Undocumented Immigrant': The Los Angeles Times will move away from using "illegal immigrant" and "undocumented immigrant," the newspaper announced Wednesday.

It said that it is dropping both terms in favor of describing a person's circumstances.

A staff memo from the paper's standards and practices committee explained, "'Illegal immigrants' is overly broad and does not accurately apply in every situation. The alternative suggested by the 1995 guidelines, 'undocumented immigrants,' similarly falls short of our goal of precision. It is also untrue in many cases, as with immigrants who possess passports or other documentation but lack valid visas."

Deirdre Edgar, the Times readers' representative, wrote Thursday that the some of the paper's writers already avoid "illegal immigrant," though the written guidelines have just now been updated.