Littleton Program Served as Model for Senate Immigration Bill
“So what’s the latest with this immigration bill?”
Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet fielded this question, along with many others from immigrants pursuing American citizenship during a visit to the Littleton Immigrant Resource Center (LIRC) earlier this morning. The immigrants, who hailed from across the globe, quizzed the Senator on everything from the Farm Bill to the prospects of the House passing an immigration reform bill, while showing him the exercises – such as Citizen Jeopardy and civics flashcards – they use to help study for their citizenship exams.
LIRC is an award-winning program that helps immigrants connect with resources, work towards citizenship, learn english, and contribute civically and economically to the Littleton community, through one-on-one mentoring programs and small group classes. Programs like LIRC served as a model, in part, for the integration provisions included in the Senate's bipartisan immigration bill, which Bennet authored as a member of the “Gang of 8.”
"The success of the Littleton program is proof that when immigrants are successfully integrated into society they have meaningful and valuable contributions to make, both civically and economically," Bennet said. "By helping new immigrants connect with their neighbors, understand our laws and history, and learn the important rights and responsibilities of being an American, we build stronger more unified communities. These are the types of grassroots, locally driven programs that we should be encouraging and emulating."
LIRC was recognized as part of Harvard’s inaugural “Bright Ideas” program, which showcases creative government programs. LIRC was also the recipient of an E Pluribus Unum prize from the Migration Policy Institute.
Photos from the visit can be found here.