Seattle City Council
3/13/2013 1:40:00 AM
Jennifer Samuels, Councilmember Harrell's office, 206-684-8572
Dana Robinson Slote (206) 615-0061
Councilmember Bruce Harrell
Seattle City Councilmember Harrell seeks Commissioner applications
for the Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission
SEATTLE - Seattle City Councilmember Bruce Harrell today announced commissioner openings for the Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission (IRC).
Reflecting the diversity of Seattle's immigrant and refugee communities, the board will have 15 members (eight appointed by the Mayor and seven appointed by the City Council). Board members will be appointed to one or two-year terms, with the option of reappointment for another term.
With the unprecedented growth in the foreign-born population since the 1980s, Seattle has become an increasingly multi-cultural city, rich with diversity. In keeping with the Race and Social Justice Initiative, Mayor Mike McGinn and the Seattle City Council want to ensure that city government provides high-quality customer service to all, including immigrants and refugees living and working in Seattle. To this end, Seattle's Immigrant and Refugee Commission was created in 2008 and re-established in 2012.
The duties of the Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission include:
- Advising the Mayor, City Council, and City departments and offices on ways to enhance and improve access to city services and resources for immigrants and refugees, as well as strengthening opportunities for immigrants and refugees to participate in civic life.
- Advising the City on successful implementation of the Immigrant and Refugee Action Plan and on future updates to the plan.
- Advising all city departments and offices in matters affecting immigrants and refugees, as appropriate.
- Encouraging understanding between and among the various immigrant and refugee communities and the larger Seattle community.
- Advocating on behalf of immigrant and refugees in the larger Seattle community.
- Assisting in the direction of the recently created Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs.
Applications for Council vacancies will be accepted through March 25, 2013. To apply, send a resume and a cover letter or short bio to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The formation of the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) and its IRC Commission recognizes that Seattle is home to many immigrant and refugee communities and that language and cultural barriers can compromise equal access to government services and programs. These barriers combined with the complex nature of issues that affect immigrant and refugee communities, resulted in the creation of the OIRA and the IRC Commission. The Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission will help strengthen the relationship between government and immigrant and refugee communities.