City of Minneapolis

Immigrant and refugee affairs

Issued  by the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA), an office within the Department of Neighborhood and Community Relations

 July 12, 2019

Immigration News Community Can Use

This issue of the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs Bulletin is dedicated to actions and events impacting immigrant and refugee communities in the City of Minneapolis and beyond.

From threats of ramped up immigration enforcement to inhumane detention conditions for child migrants at the United States southern border, the actions of our government demand our attention and our response.

The Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) is a resource to community in these challenging times. OIRA informs community about immigration related events, connects Minneapolis residents to legal service providers and holds forums on immigration law and policy. If you have an immigration related concern, please contact OIRA by visiting our webpage at

City of Minneapolis Issues Statement in Response to Immigration Enforcement Threat

Mayor Jacob Frey, City Council President Lisa Bender and Minneapolis Police Chief Medeira Arradondo recently issued a joint statement reaffirming Minneapolis as a Welcoming City, confirming that Minneapolis Police does not cooperate with or participate in ICE enforcement activity, and  and condemning actions that put residents in fear or at risk. This joint statement was issued in the wake of reports in late June (renewed this week) that ICE would be targeting 10 US cities (not including Minneapolis) for ramped up enforcement activities.

Public Meeting on Immigration at State Capitol

The Minnesota State Legislature People of Color Indigenous Caucus hosted an important public meeting on Friday June 28 featuring immigration attorneys with experience on the ground at our Southern border. Attorneys Kara Lynum, Ana Pottratz Acosta and Robyn Meyer Thompson also shared information about US asylum laws and procedures, local immigration court practices and resources, and what we all need to know about our government's actions and actions all Minnesotans can take.

The audio of this meeting:

The video of this meeting:

Upcoming Events

July 12: (TONIGHT!) Lights for Liberty

July 14: Twin Cities World Refugee Day

July 15: Hands off Honduras with  Karen Spring

July 20: Colombian Independence Day

July 26: Liberian Independence Day Dinner and Ball

July 27: Carifest

August 10: India Fest

Critical Know Your Rights Resources

Community Forums and Events

OIRA participates in Continuing Legal Education and other presentations and seminars to address immigration-related topics as well as City of Minneapolis Welcoming Policies, Programs and Initiatives, including the following recent events:

Facebook Live event in conjunction with Isuroon and Minnesota Public Housing Partnership, on the subject of immigrants and housing

Hawthorne Neighborhood Council Podcast (Episode 20), on the subject of the purpose and mission of OIRA

Nonprofit Focus: Minnesota Freedom Fund

The Minnesota Freedom Fund pays immigration bonds for people who are detained during their immigration court cases. People who cannot afford to pay their immigration bonds and remain jailed throughout their immigration court (removal) cases find it harder to hire an immigration attorney and are less likely to win in immigration court. Prolonged detention also harms families. The Minnesota Freedom Fund accepts donations and has an online application form for people needing assistance in paying their immigration bonds.

About this Bulletin

The Bulletin of the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs is published monthly and provides information on issues that have an impact on immigrant and refugee communities in the City of Minneapolis.

Please contact OIRA Director Michelle Rivero at, 612-673-6103 or 612-357-1875 if you have information you would like to share in this Bulletin or for comments or questions.

For reasonable accommodations or alternative formats please contact (add your information here including: department, contact person, phone and email). 

People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000. TTY users can call 612-673-2157 or 612-673-2626.

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.