Home to 10.4 million residents, 140 cultures, and as many as 224 languages, Los Angeles County is the most populated and culturally diverse county in America. To celebrate the numerous contributions that refugees have made to enhance the culture in Los Angeles County, the Board of Supervisors has proclaimed June as “Refugee Awareness Month.”
The United States is historically recognized around the world as a nation that welcomes refugees who pursue freedom, opportunity and integration. America offers refugees a chance for a new start and a better future for their families, free of religious and political persecution, war and civil turmoil.
“The decision to leave their country often involves unimaginable risks,” says Sheryl L. Spiller, Director of the Department of Public Social Services (DPSS). “In choosing Los Angeles County as their new-found home, we are afforded the opportunity to serve and assist them in rebuilding their lives – free from the harm, oppression and the violence they left behind.”
The annual observance serves as an opportunity to highlight the collaboration between DPSS’ Greater Avenues for Independence Refugee Employment Program, the Department of Public Health, and community and faith-based partners to help refugee families and individuals begin their new lives in the county.
This partnership provides culturally and linguistically sensitive resettlement assistance, including specialized employment and training services to eligible refugees and asylees residing in the United States. The services are provided up to five years from date of entry in the U.S. or from the date asylum was granted to assist refugees in adapting to the American workplace and ultimately achieving self-sufficiency to end their dependence on public assistance.
The County’s recognition coincides with the State of California’s annual “Refugee Awareness Month” observance and the United Nations High Commission on Refugees declaration of “World Refugee Day” on June 20. DPSS will also join the Los Angeles Refugee Forum to host the organization’s annual World Refugee Day Fair in the City of Glendale. The event will offer a wealth of information and resources regarding family reunification, how to apply for DPSS benefit assistance programs, where to find employment opportunities, and many other services to help refugees with their difficult transitions.
As California’s COVID-19 case rates have fallen to among the lowest in the country and almost 19 million Californians are fully vaccinated, the state is moving 'Beyond the Blueprint' to fully reopen its economy and end many pandemic-era restrictions, announced California Department of Public Health officials. In addition, Los Angeles County Public Health noted the current guidelines vaccinated and unvaccinated County residents are to follow as restrictions relax and the economy reopens.
A virtual town hall Thursday brought together Los Angeles County Public Health officials to answer questions from the public about changes to coronavirus restrictions come Tuesday when California’s “blueprint for a safer economy” expires.
SCV Water’s quick and proactive response to removing per- and polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) chemicals in its groundwater supply received top honors as the Best Environmental Project from the American Public Works Association (APWA) – High Desert Branch.