WRAL Documentary: Land of Opportunity

Posted January 12, 2018 1:10 p.m. EST
Updated July 13, 2018 9:56 a.m. EDT

Immigration is a polarizing issue and the subject of an ongoing national debate. The issue isn’t just political or ideological, especially in our state.

Hispanic immigrants play a pivotal and undeniable role North Carolina’s economy. The new WRAL documentary “Land of Opportunity” examines the impact of Hispanic immigrants in North Carolina.

Hispanic immigrants make up nearly 30 percent of North Carolina’s workforce in farming, fishing and forestry, and about 20 percent of the construction workforce. Many are college-educated and work in professional fields.

The overall buying power of all Hispanic immigrants contributes more than $10 billion each year to the state’s economy, and nearly half a billion dollars in state and local tax revenue.

“Land of Opportunity” profiles several successful Hispanic immigrants in North Carolina and examines their contributions to our economy and our communities.

One started work in the fields and worked his way up to a management position at a major agricultural business. Another founded the state’s first organization for Hispanic professionals. A third founded a Montessori school teaching mostly non-Hispanic students and preparing them for a society that is becoming increasingly diverse.

The documentary tells their stories within the framework of the overall economic impact of Hispanic immigration to North Carolina.

"Land of Opportunity," is hosted by WRAL News anchor and reporter Lena Tillett. It is available on TV, web and streaming devices.