The information on this page is out of date. However, some of the content may still be useful, so we have archived the page.
Archived from our former blog, The Beacon.
Strengthening Communities by Welcoming and Integrating Immigrants and Refugees
Immigrants and refugees have come to our shores in search of opportunity and freedom since before the founding of our nation. The process of integrating into a new land – to achieve self-sufficiency, political and civic involvement, and social inclusion – can be difficult but the rewards can be immense. We are both children of immigrants and can attest to the success that stems from successful integration into the fabric of our nation.
Yesterday, we had the honor of submitting to President Obama a report from the Task Force on New Americans entitled Strengthening Communities by Welcoming All Residents: A Federal Strategic Action Plan on Immigrant and Refugee Integration. This plan outlines a robust federal immigrant and refugee integration strategy that will advance our global competitiveness and identifies ways to ensure our nation's diverse people are fully contributing to their communities, and welcomed into them.
Established by President Obama as part of the immigration accountability executive actions announced in November 2014, the Task Force is comprised of 16 federal departments, agencies, and White House offices. Its work was extensive, fast-paced and – most importantly – rewarding. To prepare this action plan, we conducted an assessment of existing federal integration initiatives, engaged with stakeholders at the local and national levels, and solicited recommendations from the public.
Our initial strategic action plan provides, for the president’s consideration, specific recommendations which are intended to help:
- Build welcoming communities
- Strengthen existing pathways to naturalization and promote civic engagement
- Support skill development, foster entrepreneurship, and protect new American workers
- Expand opportunities for linguistic integration and education