Family, Politics

Baltimore County unveils strategic plan to improve services and inclusion for immigrant community

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TOWSON, MD—The Baltimore County New Americans Task Force has released a new strategic plan outlining recommendations to improve services and increase inclusion for the county’s immigrant community.

The plan, titled “Welcoming and Belonging Strategic Plan,” was developed through a collaboration between the task force, county government, and Welcoming America, an organization that supports immigrants across the country.

“Diversity is our strength in Baltimore County, and we’re proud to welcome new residents from around the world who are eager to share their values, build new connections, and use their talents to make our communities a more vibrant place to call home,” said Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski. “I am grateful to the New American Task Force members and our partner organizations for their incredible work and we look forward to using this plan as a guide to continue ensuring that Baltimore County remains a place where diversity, inclusivity, and opportunity thrive.”

The task force was established in June 2023 with the goal of strengthening relationships between the county’s immigrant community, which currently represents approximately 12% of Baltimore County’s population, and government agencies. The plan reflects the culmination of the task force’s work over the past 10 months, which included the distribution of surveys, focus groups, and research on barriers facing immigrants in areas such as health care, education, and economic opportunity.

The plan’s recommendations are focused on five categories: community and civic engagement; equitable access; economic development; connected, safe and healthy communities; and education. Specific recommendations include establishing a cabinet-level Office of New Americans to coordinate County agencies’ efforts; developing a language-access strategy to provide equitable access to services and resources; expanding access to financial resources for New American business owners and employees to achieve economic stability leading to sustainable living wages; and implementing comprehensive language access policies across Baltimore County’s Health and Human Services.

The Baltimore County government has committed to investing in its immigrant community as part of an effort to ensure sustainable population and economic growth. The new strategic plan provides a framework for how the county can achieve its goals of creating a more welcoming and inclusive community for all.

The Welcoming and Belonging Strategic Plan can be viewed online here (PDF).

This article was written with the assistance of AI and reviewed by a human editor.

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