It’s Immigrant Heritage Week - a celebration of the rich diversity of New York and our history as a welcoming haven for immigrants and refugees. Since 1886, Lady Liberty has stood in our harbor as a symbol of hope and freedom for those seeking our shores. 101 years later, the NYIC was born - and for 30 years we’ve worked to promote the rights of immigrants who call our New York home.
Here are 5 things you didn’t know about #OurNY’s immigrants and the NYIC:
1. More than 200 languages are spoken in New York City.
Our "Know Your Rights" flyers and toolkits - of which we've distributed thousands since November - are available in English, Spanish, and Chinese. We'll continue to translate and distribute these during this uncertain time for immigrants as part of our "This is Our New York" rapid response initiative.
2. Immigrants make up more than 10% of the populations of Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Albany and Schenectady.
The NYIC has been expanding our presence outside of New York City through our amazing Regional Advocacy team - and we’ve hired a new outreach senior associate based in Buffalo. Get to know Meghan Maloney de Zaldivar!
3. Black immigrants make up 30% of the total Black population in New York State.
Our Black Immigrant Engagement Initiative engages community members through outreach, legal services and advocacy. Along with a collaborative of Black-led organizations, we're working to infuse the Black immigrant experience into the immigrant rights movement and broader struggles for social justice. Follow the initiative at @nyicbiei.
4. Immigrants contribute more than $200 billion to the State’s economy.
We’ve created a financial literacy guide and provide financial workshops at our “Key to the City” events - a one-stop shop where immigrant community members can also receive health and social services, legal screenings, and ID documents from their consulates. Our next Key to the City is April 29 in Far Rockaway - follow this one-of-a-kind initiative on Twitter: @keytothecityNY.
5. A third of business owners in the New York metro area are immigrants - and immigrants make up more than a quarter of all positions in fields like nursing, construction, accounting, and childcare.
On May 1 - known as May Day - the NYIC will RISE UP to fight anti-worker and anti-immigrant hatred and intolerance. Join us at 5PM in Foley Square, NYC, for a rally filled with live music and stories from those directly impacted by the administration’s bigoted policies. RSVP here and spread the word!
Want more info on the NYIC’s work to protect and promote immigrants’ rights in New York? Text “NYIC” to VOICES (864237) to get updates from us as we defend #OurNY.