Baltimore Welcoming Week

Mayor Rawlings-Blake Announces Baltimore Welcoming Week

Week of Outreach Initiatives Will Promote Collaboration Between Immigrants and Communities to Build a Better, Safer Baltimore 

BALTIMORE, Md. (September 15, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced that the City of Baltimore will host Baltimore Welcoming Week, September 15 – 21, joining Welcoming America—a national grassroots organization that works to promote mutual respect and cooperation between immigrants and long term residents—in celebrating National Welcoming Week.

During Baltimore Welcoming Week, the City of Baltimore will highlight the importance of joining together in a spirit of unity to build a better, safer, and stronger Baltimore that embraces new and native-born Americans.

"Baltimore's success is, in part, contingent upon ensuring that everyone has an equitable stake in their communities," said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. "If we want to grow our city, we must be receptive to all cultures and have a mutual understanding of what they represent. In Baltimore, we seek to create an environment where all cultures, ethnicities, and races feel welcomed and that everyone can call home."

During Baltimore Welcoming Week, the Mayor's Office of Immigrant and Multicultural Affairs (MIMA) will release a series of videos entitled The BaltiMORE Diverse Initiative: Stories of a Welcoming Baltimore. The BaltiMORE Diverse Initiative highlights the stories of immigrants and the communities that have embraced them. The first of three videos was released today on the mayor's YouTube channel, youtube.com/mayorsrb. The first video can be found directly at youtu.be/tjAH4-bSTVE.

Later this week, Mayor Rawlings-Bake will release The New Americans Task Force report, The Role of Immigrants in Growing Baltimore, Recommendations to Retain and Attract New Americans, which is the result of a collaborative effort between the Office of the Mayor, The New Americans Task Force, and The Abell Foundation. The report highlights 32 recommendations to further strengthen the administration's efforts to make Baltimore a welcoming place that is committed to economic opportunity and inclusion.

"Welcoming America applauds Mayor Rawlings-Blake and the City of Baltimore for celebrating National Welcoming Week and for lifting up diversity as a source of strength for the city and its future economic prosperity," said David Lubell, executive director of Welcoming America. "The work of The New Americans Taskforce demonstrates what is possible when the community comes together to embrace its growing immigrant community, and is a model that we hope other U.S. cities will follow."

Other municipalities participating in National Welcoming Week include Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Austin, Texas; Boise, Idaho; Chicago, Illinois; Columbus, Ohio; Dayton, Ohio; Dodge City, Kansas; High Point, North Carolina; Lincoln, Nebraska; Louisville, Kentucky; Macomb County, Michigan; Montgomery County, Maryland; Nashville, Tennessee; New York, New York; Oakley, California; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; San Francisco, California; St. Louis, Missouri (city); St. Louis, Missouri (county); and Sterling Heights, Michigan.

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