The Diversity Council is proud to be part of a the vibrant range of conversations and initiatives in the La Crosse area aimed at creating a more welcoming environment for immigrants, who come to the La Crosse area from around the world.
La Crosse has an active Immigration Task Force and a Centro Latino. And the La Crosse Area Latino Collaborative also engages in community outreach and programming, and houses an electronic resource guide to Latina/o serving businesses and agencies in the region. Continue reading.
At the Diversity Council’s September “Lunch and Learn,” Katie Rubin, Board of Immigration Appeals Case Manager at Catholic Charities, spoke directly to our audience of employers and civic leaders. She helped raise awareness about myths that can contribute to prejudice against immigrants, as well as native-born Latino/as, Asian-Americans, and other groups. She pointed out, for example, that undocumented immigrants pay taxes, even though they are barred from receiving many services paid for with tax dollars.
According to the American Immigration Council, immigrants and their children make up a growing percentage of Wisconsin’s population and electorate. “Latinos and Asians (both foreign-born and native-born) wield 12.5% billion in consumer purchasing power” and “the businesses they own had sales and receipts of $4.7 billion and employed more than 26,500 people at last count.”
And yet, we know that issues related to documentation, language barriers, and discrimination can make it difficult for many immigrants to access resources in the area and to have a voice and rights in their workplaces, schools, and their communities.
We invite you to contribute to these conversations and help develop solutions to make our communities more inclusive of a variety of cultures.