A world and future where everyone belongs: Welcoming America releases first-ever State of Welcoming report

DECATUR, GA — Welcoming America today releases the first-ever State of Welcoming report, now available online as an interactive website.

This report — released during Welcoming America’s 15th anniversary — highlights the history of the welcoming movement, why welcoming matters, critical lessons learned, and the future of welcoming in a world facing challenges to democracy, climate change, and social divides.

It is the first report of its kind, assessing the broad landscape of welcoming efforts that includes traditional immigrant and refugee-serving organizations, as well as the role of local government, businesses, philanthropy, and other institutions that are essential to fostering welcoming environments in communities.

The report is broken up into four sections: the roots of Welcoming America; why welcoming matters and the global impact of this work; stories of welcoming champions; and the future of welcoming across the globe. Additionally, a list of resources and calls to action offer readers an opportunity to take what they learned to the next level.

Rachel Perić, executive director of Welcoming America, said: “Migration is one of the most important issues of our time. The State of Welcoming demonstrates the rich and evolving landscape of leaders who have taken up the mantle of welcoming, and whose efforts and insights help all of us meet the moment with the power to forge a world where we all belong.”

The report makes the case for five “whys” of welcoming: Welcoming fosters belonging; contributes to thriving democracy; strengthens the economy; counteracts racism and hate; informs effective and equitable policies.

Additionally, it explores the results of the welcoming movement over the past 15 years, juxtaposed with critical moments in U.S. immigration policy at the federal and local level and what more is needed to advance the movement. Among them are:

  • 22 million Americans now live in a Certified Welcoming place.
  • Welcoming works: The vision of a welcoming community has taken hold in communities, cities, and regions worldwide. Leaders have championed the spirit and structure of welcoming and proven it as a sustainable solution to seemingly intractable challenges.
  • Words matter: Asset-based narratives are expanding the reach and resonance of welcoming efforts, and influencing the immigration narrative to make it easier for a broader range of communities to see themselves in this work.
  • Welcoming infrastructure is a future-proof strategy: Establishing offices dedicated to newcomers within local governments is becoming increasingly common and broadly supported by most Americans.

The full report is viewable at stateofwelcoming.org.


About Welcoming America

Welcoming America is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that leads a movement of inclusive communities becoming more prosperous by ensuring everyone belongs. We believe that all people, including immigrants, are valued contributors and vital to the success of our communities and shared future. Through the Welcoming Network, we work to help communities develop the roadmap they need to create welcoming policies and share new approaches to inclusion to create an environment where everyone can truly thrive. Learn more at welcomingamerica.org.