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Atlanta to become a city that welcomes immigrants

Mayor Kasim Reed and members of the Welcoming Atlanta Group announced today the recommendations being implemented to foster a welcoming environment in the City of Atlanta for all individuals regardless of race, ethnicity, or place of origin. The 20 recommendations will focus on community engagement, developing and harnessing talent, and public safety. The announcement was made during National Welcoming Week which highlights the contributions of immigrants from across the globe and their instrumental impact on the day to day lives of all Americans. Metro Atlanta boosts the second fastest growing foreign-born population in the country, second only to Baltimore.

“As Atlanta positions itself to be a global leader, attracting and retaining talent is imperative,” said Mayor Reed. “The Welcoming Atlanta initiative builds upon the existing priorities for the city – public safety, welfare, economic development, civic engagement and education – and in so doing, will not only create an environment that is welcoming to new arrivals, but a stronger community for all Atlantans.”

Earlier this year, Mayor Reed announced the creation of the Welcoming Atlanta Working Group. The 20-member group was tasked with developing recommendations to ensure that Atlanta’s newly arrived communities are being integrated and supported. Over the course of the summer, Welcoming Group co-chairs Jeffrey Tapia, executive director of the Latin American Association, and Charles Kuck, managing partner of Kuck Immigration Partners, met regularly with subcommittees to discuss key areas of immigrant integration including: ensuring equitable access to services; expanding educational opportunities; facilitating economic empowerment; enhancing public safety and fostering a connected community; and building immigrant civic engagement and leadership.

“We are thrilled to be a part of Mayor Reed’s historic commitment to the immigrant and refugee communities,” said Co-Chair Charles Kuck. “It’s been an honor to be entrusted with the responsibility to advise our city’s leader on the issues that we work on day in and day out and we are confident that the lives of all Atlantans will be enriched as we welcome America’s newest communities.”

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