City asks for input on plan to make Fayetteville more welcoming to immigrants

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City officials are asking for opinions on potential strategies for the Welcoming Fayetteville Plan, which will focus on the inclusion and integration of new Americans in the community.

The project was first announced by Mayor Lioneld Jordan in his 2017 state of the city address as part of a plan to ensure that intentional efforts are made to further the city’s support of diversity and equal rights in Fayetteville.

In recent decades, the region’s foreign-born population has quickly grown, as seen in a recent study released by the Partnership for a New American Economy, EngageNWA, and the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation.

The study found that in 2014, immigrants made up 25 percent of the total population in Springdale, 19.5 percent in Rogers, 13.5 percent in Bentonville, and 7.4 percent in Fayetteville. It also found that immigrants accounted for 42 percent of the region’s population growth between 2009 and 2014, and contributed $3.1 billion to the metro area’s GDP in 2014 and held $1 billion in spending power.

To gather feedback, Fayetteville officials have developed an online survey, and have scheduled a series of public workshops in September and October.

From a news release:

The Welcoming Fayetteville Plan will identify strategies that will allow the City and its stakeholders to break down barriers and make everyday life easier for new Americans. The survey and workshops will focus on prioritization of potential strategies that were developed after meeting with local and regional organizations that work with new Americans.

According to the release, the stakeholder organizations represent sectors like education, health, transportation, culture, and economic development.

Public feedback will be used to identify existing conditions, community concerns, and focus areas for the plan, which is expected to be completed and presented to the City Council in early 2018.

» Take the online survey

Public Workshop Schedule

Saturday, Sept. 9 – Fayetteville Farmers Market, 101 W. Mountain St., from 8-11:30 a.m.
Wednesday, Sept. 27 – Fayetteville Public Library, 401 W. Mountain St., from 10 am to 2 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 3 – Fayetteville City Hall, 113 W. Mountain St., from 3-7 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 10 – University of Arkansas Student Union, 435 N. Garland Ave., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.