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City News

Posted on: September 6, 2019

City Celebrates Welcoming Week September 13 - 22

welcoming week

For the third year in a row, the City of Portland will proudly celebrate Welcoming Week by hosting a series of interactive events beginning September 14, 2019 to recognize immigrant contributions to our community. Welcoming Week demonstrates that in places large and small, rural and urban, people of all backgrounds are coming together to create stronger, more prosperous communities.  

As part of Welcoming Week, the City is hosting for its staff a panel discussion composed of City of Portland staff who are themselves recent immigrants who will share their personal experiences, challenges, and triumphs as newcomers to the United States. The rotunda and second floor of City Hall will also display artwork and haikus created by Portland public school students demonstrating the City’s commitment to being welcoming to all.

The public is also invited to join in a city-wide celebration on September 14th. We Are Portland is a celebration of our city’s diversity through music and dance. People will dance/walk a mile to global music through the streets of downtown Portland, ending at Lincoln Park to continue the celebration with music, educational opportunities & some food. The event will also be an opportunity for City of Portland Departments and community partners to share their work, services and initiatives/events with all our neighbors, especially our global neighbors. Register or request a song for this FREE event today. 

“Welcoming Week is an exciting opportunity to celebrate, among others around the country, that Portland is a global city; a city of neighbors where all individuals, from all backgrounds, races, ethnicities and countries of origins are welcome, celebrated and valued,” said Julia Trujillo Luengo, Director of the City’s Office of Economic Opportunity. “As our city becomes more diverse, it also becomes more vibrant. Please join us to learn of one another during this exciting celebration!”   

“Welcoming Week allows the City of Portland to celebrate the values that unite us as neighbors, parents, and colleagues, and to make our great city even more welcoming to newcomers and to everyone who calls our community home,” said Mandy Levine, the City of Portland’s Workforce Diversity and Inclusion Specialist. “The City is committed to not only diversifying its workforce so that it better mirrors the City’s population, but also to creating and maintaining an inclusive and equitable work culture where employees of all backgrounds and perspectives feel heard, respected, and connected.”

“These celebrations are part of a powerful and growing movement in our country and around the world,” said David Lubell, founder and executive director of Welcoming America. “Communities recognize that they are more vibrant and prosperous when everyone feels welcomed and can fully participate. In events across the world this week, new and longtime residents are building bridges and make their communities stronger.” 

Questions about Portland’s Welcoming Week activities? Please contact Julia Trujillo Luengo, Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity (jtrujillo@portlandmaine.gov) or Mandy Levine, Workforce Diversity and Inclusion Specialist (alevine@portlandmaine.gov).

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