South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

Pittsburgh is the 12th Certified Welcoming Place for immigrant, refugee and new Americans in the United States

 

September 28, 2021



As part of the City of Pittsburgh's Welcoming Week 2021, the Office of Mayor William Peduto and Office of Equity's Welcoming Pittsburgh announced  Pittsburgh has been named a Certified Welcoming place, becoming the 12th in the United States to achieve this designation.

To become Certified Welcoming, the City of Pittsburgh completed an intensive evaluation. Local policies and programs for immigrant, refugee and New American inclusion, led by Welcoming Pittsburgh, were compared to the comprehensive Welcoming Standard that covers community investments from education to economic development to policing. 

As of 2019, immigrant residents in Pittsburgh make up nearly 4 percent of the population, with 76 percent being of prime working age (16-64). Additionally, immigrant residents are 27 percent more likely to be entrepreneurs and more likely to hold graduate degrees. According to New American Economy, immigrants in Pittsburgh pay $1.2 billion in taxes and hold $2.7 billion in spending power, demonstrating their sizable impact on the economy locally and beyond.

"Pittsburgh has a tradition of welcoming immigrants from all around the world to contribute to the rich cultural fabric of our city," said Mayor Peduto. "We know that today, just as it has been historically, immigrants make our city stronger because when our neighbors have equitable access to opportunities and succeed, Pittsburgh succeeds. That's why we have strived to be a welcoming city and are grateful to be a Certified Welcoming city. I'd like to thank Welcoming America for recognizing the work of Welcoming Pittsburgh, our community partners and our residents in creating a community where our policies and programs promote action for immigrant inclusion, especially in a time where our immigrant neighbors need us the most." 

Welcoming Pittsburgh works with several partners to implement policies, programs and initiatives guided by the Welcoming Pittsburgh Roadmap, a comprehensive citywide plan compiled by 40 local leaders from diverse sectors and over 3,000 community members. Partners include the Welcoming Pittsburgh steering committee, All for All Coalition, Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh and more.

Policies and initiatives enacted as a result of the roadmap are available at https://pittsburghpa.gov/wp/roadmap-report.

The Certified Welcoming program is run and administered by Welcoming America, a national nonprofit organization that aims to build a nation of neighbors by fostering welcoming communities. 

Pittsburgh landlords who are interested in working with the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development to provide housing for refugees can find out more information here, should contact refugeehousing@pittsburghpa.gov. 

 

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