CHARLOTTE, N.C (May 19, 2022) — The City of Charlotte is pleased to announce its achievement in becoming a Certified Welcoming place, the first in North Carolina and the southeastern U.S. region.
"Charlotte's immigrants make incredible economic and cultural contributions to our city," said
Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles. "We take pride in celebrating the diversity of our community, and we are proud to officially be certified as a welcoming city. We will continue to work hard so that residents know that all are welcome here."
Certified Welcoming program is run and administered by
Welcoming America, a national nonprofit organization that aims to build a nation of neighbors by fostering welcoming communities. The timing of the announcement comes at the beginning of the
Welcoming Interactive, an annual conference which is being hosted in Charlotte this week.
Rachel Perić, executive director of Welcoming America, said, "We are pleased to congratulate the City of Charlotte and its many partners on achieving the designation of Certified Welcoming. As the second largest city in the Southeast, Charlotte's work serves as a model for creating an environment that celebrates and invests in residents from around the globe as a point of pride, signaling a strong commitment to the connection between economic vitality and a community in which everyone can thrive and belong."
Certified Welcoming is a formal designation by Welcoming America for cities and counties that have created policies and programs reflecting their values and commitment to immigrant inclusion. Since launching in 2017, Certified Welcoming and its operating framework, the
Welcoming Standard, have served as a roadmap for local governments seeking to build truly welcoming communities.
For Charlotte, the roadmap consisted of improved language access policies, workforce development opportunities for immigrants, and strengthening connections with community-based organizations. Highlights from the certification process include the launch of Naturalize Charlotte, a citywide effort to boost naturalization among residents, and new training for the city's code enforcement division.
About the City of Charlotte
The City of Charlotte provides services to more than 870,000 residents. The city's priorities are workforce and business development; transportation, planning and the environment; safe communities; and great neighborhoods. Charlotte is No. 6 on U.S. News & World Report's
150 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2020-21. For the latest news and updates about city government, visit the citywide newsroom at
charlottenc.gov/newsroom, and follow @CLTgov on
About Certified Welcoming
Certified Welcoming program launched in 2017 by Welcoming America to establish a formal designation for cities and counties that have taken action on their commitment to welcoming and met the high bar set by the
Welcoming Standard Document. Certified Welcoming communities gain a competitive advantage by using their designation for attracting and retaining a global workforce and businesses whose values align with welcoming and inclusion.
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. Learn more at welcomingamerica.org.
For Welcoming America: Lola Pak,
For the City of Charlotte: Leslie Blaser,