Press Release
March 2, 2012

Mayor Emanuel Announces City of Chicago Website is Now Available in Multiple Languages

Via Google Translate Residents can Access City Information in 64 Languages Including Spanish, Polish, Chinese and Arabic
Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO – Today, Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that the City of Chicago website is now available in 64 languages via Google Translate, providing non-English speakers with easier access to information about City services, programs and initiatives.

“Chicago’s vitality has been built on the strength of immigrant populations that have come to enjoy new freedoms and access new opportunities,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I want to make Chicago the most immigrant-friendly city in the world and making the City’s website available in many different languages will ensure every law-abiding Chicagoan has access to the resources they need to become productive members of society and contribute to our thriving global city.”

Using Google Translate, now integrated on the City’s homepage, residents can convert the City’s website into multiple languages including Spanish, Polish, Chinese and Arabic. In July, Mayor Emanuel announced the creation of the Office of New Americans (ONA) — an office dedicated to improving access to City services and engaging Chicago’s global immigrant communities through enhanced collaboration with community organizations, educational institutions and the private sector.

One third of Chicago households speak a language other than English as its primary language and one in five Chicago residents is an immigrant. ONA works to forge partnerships with community organizations, educational institutions and the private sector to:

  • Expand opportunities for immigrant business owners and entrepreneurs;
  • Enhance coordination between City government and community organizations to increase access to existing City, state and federal programs;
  • Expand immigrant parent engagement throughout Chicago Public Schools by learning from successful models like the Logan Square Neighborhood Associations’ Parent-Mentor program;
  • Establish a centralized language access policy for the City of Chicago that ensures important information about education, public safety, healthcare and City services is transmitted in a culturally competent and effective manner;
  • Expand English language educational resources and opportunities in community settings;
  • Support the launch of the Illinois DREAM Act to ensure Chicago’s students have access to funds to attend to college; and
  • Promote U.S. citizenship by working with community organizations and federal agencies that provide immigration and citizenship services.

 

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