Focused on Louisville’s foreign-born population and workforce
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Dec. 16, 2016) — Mayor Greg Fischer and Kent Oyler, President and CEO of Greater Louisville, Inc. (GLI), the metro chamber of commerce, were joined today by members of Louisville’s foreign-born and professional communities to unveil the Global Louisville Action Plan.
The plan is a collaborative effort among the Mayor’s Office, GLI and hundreds of community members, and outlines key strategies to attract, retain and grow Louisville’s foreign-born population and workforce. It provides an overview of the region’s foreign-born population and a set of action steps to increase the number of immigrants here and their capacity to thrive.
“The Global Louisville Action Plan is fueled by our city value of compassion and outlines the work we’ll do to attract more internationals to support our growth,” said Fischer. “If we are serious about economic development and community growth, we must embrace this plan and welcome good, hard-working people from around the world with open arms.”
The three areas of focus identified in the plan include:
- Integrate: Provide equitable and efficient access to services and resources so that immigrants can more readily use pathways to education and career development to realize their full potential.
- Empower: Assist immigrants in engaging with the Louisville community for the long-term and increase their participation levels in all aspects of city life.
- Attract: Develop and implement strategies to attract and retain skilled foreign-born workforce and entrepreneurs.
Current population growth projections put Louisville on track to almost double its 2015 foreign-born population by 2025. In order to meet growth goals, the Louisville region is looking to accelerate attraction of native and foreign-born migrants to the area by increasing annual growth of all inbound migration. By 2040, the foreign-born population in Louisville is expected to be 172,000, or 17.2 percent of the total population.
New efforts to support the Global Louisville Action Plan have already been put into motion, including:
- Greater Louisville International Professionals (GLIP) continues to serve as a platform to attract, retain and engage international professional talent in our region
- Prospanica, the local Hispanic and Latino professionals’ organization, and the Kentucky Health Career Center came together last August to prepare Spanish speaking job seekers for job interviews. Over 200 job seekers showed up for the event.
- KIVA USA, a relationship-based crowdfunding lending platform will pilot a citizenship loan program that will help with the fees associated with the citizenship process, which is sometimes the biggest barrier to completing naturalization.
- Next month, Metro will be launching the Louisville Welcome Academy, a six-day program where immigrant leaders will build leadership skills and connections with city officials to improve communication channels.
- Re-credentialing: In the coming year, local immigrants who have high levels of education will get assistance becoming qualified to work in their field or find work that meets their skills and education.