The Office of New Americans (ONA) will continue working to ensure that Chicago is a welcoming city for immigrants. ONA has developed programs to support Becoming a Citizen, Deferred Action, and Support for Entrepreneurs and Undocumented Students, among others. These are some of the City of Chicago’s recent actions for immigrants:
- City Council Approves Budget Amendment to Support Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago Legal Protection Fund
The Chicago City Council approved Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s amendment to the 2017 budget that redirects $1.3 million in support of the Chicago Legal Protection Fund. Earlier this month, the Mayor announced the creation of the Fund in response to a critical need to increase legal services for immigrant communities across the City amidst threats of deportation following the Presidential election.
- Mayor Emanuel brings together municipal leaders to urge President-Elect Trump to continue DACA
Chicago along with New York City, Los Angeles, Houston, Philadelphia and other Mayors cautioned the Administration about the economic impact eliminating the program would have, citing the potential loss of $9.9 billion in tax contributions over the next four years
On December 8th, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and mayors from across the country sent a letter to President-elect Donald Trump urging him to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program until Congress modernizes the immigration system and provides a more permanent form of relief for the close to one million young people who were brought to the United States before they were 16.
- Mayor Emanuel joins Senator Durbin and Congressman Gutierrez in launching the new “Chicago is with You” Task Force
The Task Force will collaborate on mental health, legal services, diversity training for employers and education to ensure the comprehensive delivery of services to the immigrant, refugees and other disenfranchised communities.
In addition to working on the four policy areas, the task force will also begin working to develop a website that will provide information about immigration resources and connect Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) youth to Chicagoans who have volunteered to provide assistance.
- Mayor Emanuel creates legal protection fund with national immigrant protection center, pledges $1 million to start the fund
Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced the creation of a Legal Protection Fund in partnership with the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) to assist thousands of immigrants and refugees threatened with deportation, pledging $1 million to start the fund. The Mayor also challenged the private and philanthropic community to join the effort to provide legal resources to these families in need.
This investment would allow NIJC and its partner law firms to serve more than 3,000 additional residents through legal consultations and representation in immigration cases, representing a 50 percent increase over the services they currently provide to immigrant communities.
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Read the Chicago New Americans Plan: