- Associated Press - Friday, March 3, 2017

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - Mayor Rosalynn Bliss wants to start an education program for immigrants who move to Grand Rapids in western Michigan.

Bliss announced her plan during Thursday’s State of the City address, MLive.com reported (https://bit.ly/2mOsltC ) Friday.

The program would be called “Our City Academy,” and Bliss said she is working with Grand Rapids Public Schools, the Hispanic Center of Western Michigan and Sister Cities International on the plan.

She hopes to launch the program within the next two months.

“We need to provide a safe place for people to come together to not only learn how to connect with local government, but how to receive services and also how to get engaged,” Bliss told reporters following her speech. “We are a kind, compassionate and welcoming city and we need to be a place that if you call Grand Rapids your home, you feel safe and respected.”

President Donald Trump has vowed to crack down on immigrants living illegally in the United States. He also has threatened to withdraw federal funding from sanctuary cities that offer protections for immigrants living in the country illegally.

Grand Rapids hasn’t fully declared itself a sanctuary city, according to MLive.com.


Information from: The Grand Rapids Press:MLive.com, https://www.mlive.com

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