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DHS Reaches Out to U.S. Immigrants

The growing cultural diversity in Allegheny County presents new challenges and opportunities for human service delivery. The Department of Human Services (DHS) established the Immigrants and Internationals Initiative to further our vision of providing culturally competent services to all residents, especially those who are vulnerable.

DHS reached out to members of the immigrant and international community to come together to exchange ideas.  The resultant Immigrant and International Advisory Council (IIAC) has met regularly since October 2008.

Based on guidance received from members of the IIAC, the document, pdf.gif Immigration and Public Benefit Eligibility: An Overview was created. It serves as a resource guide for those seeking information about immigrants’ eligibility for public benefits.

DHS has begun translating its most popular brochures and A Parent’s Handbook into additional languages, primarily Spanish.

On July 9, 2009, the first Latino Family Support Center (Centro Latino Familiar) opened at 2215 Murray Avenue, in the Squirrel Hill community of Pittsburgh. It is the only family support center in the area to focus on services needed by Spanish-speaking children and families. The Allegheny Intermediate Unit is running the center with funding from DHS and the Heinz Endowments.