© 2024 KGOU
The statue As Long as the Waters Flow by Allan C. Houser stands outside the Oklahoma Capitol
News and Music for Oklahoma
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Immigration advocacy group certifies Tulsa a 'Welcoming City'

Mayor G.T. Bynum holds up a request for action to form the city's Asian Affairs commission on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023, at Tulsa City Hall.
Ben Abrams
/
OPMX
Mayor G.T. Bynum holds up a request for action to form the city's Asian Affairs commission on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023, at Tulsa City Hall.

An immigration advocacy group has given Tulsa the organization's first "Welcoming City" designation in Oklahoma.

The group Welcoming America cites how city leaders in Tulsa have built partnerships and policies that help people with immigrant and refugee backgrounds thrive and belong. The designation is a way to measure, promote and guide the efforts the cities are recognized for, according to the Welcoming America website.

Some of the efforts include establishing the Asian Affairs Commission in September, which will focus on workforce and economic development, education and civic engagement. Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum also launched the New Tulsans Initiative, which has hosted citizenship ceremonies for 11,000 international residents.

At his State of the City address last week, Mayor G.T. Bynum touted these efforts, including partnering with local organizations during the Afghan refugee resettlement.

"The work of Catholic Charities, the YWCA, B’nai Emunah Synagogue and so many others led President Biden’s top aid for refugee resettlement to come to Tulsa to see how we were handling it because he wanted to use us as a model for other cities around the country," he said.

Bynum also announced the city hired an immigrant services liaison, which he says will help them connect immigrants with jobs available within city departments.

There are 18 cities and counties in the United States with the "Welcoming City" designation.

This report was produced by the Oklahoma Public Media Exchange, a collaboration of public media organizations. Help support collaborative journalism by donating at the link at the top of this webpage.

Oklahoma Public Media Exchange
More News
Support nonprofit, public service journalism you trust. Give now.