Yes, you got that right!
Titled, Call for Ideas: Help Shape a Federal Immigrant and Refugee Integration Strategy, here is what the White House put out today in its call (hat tip: Joanne).
You have until February 9th to help Obama with your ideas!
[skipped the first couple of paragraphs of today’s press release]
We are, and will continue to be, a nation of immigrants. On average, the United States welcomes approximately 1 million lawful permanent residents and more than 700,000 newly naturalized citizens each year. These new Americans contribute significantly to our economy. In fact, while foreign-born residents make up 13 percent of the population, they represent over 16 percent of the labor force and start 28 percent of all new businesses creating jobs for millions of Americans.
The goal of the Task Force is to develop a federal immigrant integration strategy that allows new Americans to contribute to society to their fullest potential and bring new Americans together with their receiving communities to strengthen communities.
By March 2015, the Task Force will submit a plan to the President that includes recommendations for federal actions to promote the integration of new Americans. In developing this plan, we need to hear from you. You know best what is working to support immigrant integration in your community. Send us input on promising practices and examples of model programs that help immigrants and refugees to contribute to your communities and our economy.
We also need your input to ensure that federal programs and policies continue to reflect our ongoing commitment to welcoming and integrating newcomers into the fabric of our country.
Please send your ideas and examples to NewAmericans@who.eop.gov by February 9, 2015.
Take the opportunity to tell them what is really going on!
LOL! I had to laugh at how well they got all their buzz words and phrases in there: “welcoming,” “newcomers,” “nation of immigrants,” “fabric of our country,” “receiving communities,” “new Americans,” and the winner is “integration” which was used six times not including in the title!
Readers, if you haven’t noticed, the word “assimilation” is verboten! Assimilation implies that the refugees and immigrants will become like Americans (speak English, learn our history, appreciate our culture and take on aspects of it themselves) while integration suggests, at least in my mind, just your basic polite tolerance for each others cultures producing the least friction as possible between the old Americans and the “new” ones and placing American culture on equal footing with all the others.