Questions for FIRC |

Questions for FIRC

Eli VegaBreckenridge

I have been following your 8-part series on “Illegal Immigration in Colorado” during the last week. It was a well-covered series, giving us perspectives from all sides of the issue – the good, the bad and the ugly.I have one question, though, regarding Summit County: What is the FIRC (Family & Intercultural Resource Center) doing about any of these issues? They received $400,000 from the Colorado Trust over a year ago to address immigrant issues. Many of those issues were mentioned during your 8-part series, such as employment, affordable housing, availability to social service, etc. The FIRC received all this money, and the only actions they took in 2005 were to hold three community meetings, in which useful information about immigrant issues was obtained, and they hired an Immigration Integration Coordinator. So, what have they done with the money? What has their Integration Coordinator done?The FIRC is supposed to offer some assistance to the needy, like partial health assistance, partial help with electric bills, etc. Do immigrants even know those services exist? Has the FIRC even marketed/promoted those services to our county’s immigrants? What I have seen the FIRC do is appear on RSN television segments where they demonstrate the cooking of ethnic dishes. I can think of better efforts on their part to provide assistance to immigrants in Summit County. I am extremely disappointed with the FIRC’s board of directors. They should hold the FIRC’s executive director accountable to address immigrant issues for which they have received almost half a million dollars to do so.

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