Mayor Releases New Americans Task Force Report

Mayor Rawlings-Blake Releases New Americans Task Force Report on Immigrants in Baltimore

Report highlights opportunities to attract immigrants, grow city

BALTIMORE, Md. (September 17, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake released the New Americans Task Force report The Role of Immigrants in Growing Baltimore, Recommendations to Retain and Attract New Americans as part of Baltimore Welcoming Week. The report offers 32 recommendations to further strengthen Baltimore as a place of welcome, economic opportunity, and inclusion.

“As Baltimore continues to welcome new Americans, it is imperative that we recognize the unique opportunities immigrants bring to our communities,” said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. “In order to continue to grow economically and socially, we must continue to work together to break down barriers and level the playing field.”

A key goal of the Rawlings-Blake administration is to grow the city by 10,000 families over the next decade, and the ever-growing immigrant population is part of that growth. According to the report, as of 2011, more than 45,000 foreign-born immigrants call Baltimore home—75 percent of whom have arrived since 1990.

The report also reflects that new Americans have a significant impact on the local economy. Baltimore’s immigrant workers earned a median household income of more than $40,000 in 2011, totaling approximately $1 billion in wages that trickle back into the local economy. Baltimore’s immigrant population owns more than 7,500 homes in the city, and rents another 11,700 homes—helping to stabilize many neighborhoods that were formerly in decline. Additionally, 21% of the City’s businesses are owned by immigrants, contributing sales of approximately $1.3 billion to the local economy and helping to drive commerce within the city’s communities.

The report is the result of a collaborative effort between the Office of the Mayor, The New Americans Task Force, and The Abell Foundation.

Mayor Rawlings-Blake also announced the release of the second video in The BaltiMORE Diverse Initiative: Stories of a Welcoming Baltimore, a series of videos produced by the Mayor's Office of Immigrant and Multicultural Affairs (MIMA). The BaltiMORE Diverse Initiative highlights the stories of immigrants and the communities that have embraced them. The videos can be viewed on the mayor's YouTube channel, youtube.com/mayorsrb. The second video, released today, can be found at youtu.be/T6x3lNJl9lk.

“Across the country, the cities that are gaining population have vibrant and growing immigrant populations,” said Robert C. Embry, Jr., president of the Abell Foundation. “We are encouraged by the mayor’s recognition of new Americans as key to the growth of Baltimore City.”

The New Americans Task Force was established in the summer of 2013 by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to develop a plan to retain and attract immigrants as part of her goal to grow the city. The public-private collaboration was essential in exploring ways to improve existing resources and identify new ones to better address the needs of immigrants throughout Baltimore City.

The report, The Role of Immigrants in Growing Baltimore, Recommendations to Retain and Attract New Americans, can be found by visiting the Mayor's Office of Immigrant and Multicultural Affairs website at mayor.baltimorecity.gov/mima or downloaded directly from http://mayor.baltimorecity.gov/sites/default/files/RoleOfImmigrantsInGrowingBaltimore20140917.pdf.

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