As a city famous for the diversity and size of its immigrant population, Chicago has a plethora of great resources for immigrants. Here is a list of just a few of the resources you should be aware of:
MUNICIPAL IDENTIFICATION PROGRAM
In 2018, the City Clerk’s Office will begin a new program that offers identification to all Chicagoans, regardless of citizenship status. This ID is satisfactory for all City services and many private facilities.
HEALTH CARE ACCESS
The Immigrant Health Access Initiative (IHAI) launched in 2011 to build capacity at immigrant serving organizations to aid implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Initiative combines active community education, capacity building, and coordinated policy and advocacy with our members. Their goal is to build the foundation for successful immigrant participation in the health care systems in Illinois.
MENTAL HEALTH CARE
Mental healthcare and well-being services for the immigrant community are managed by Lurie Children’s Hospital. For more information, visit www.luriechildrens.org/youarenotalone.
If you are looking for direct services for children or adolescents, please contact the Illinois Screening, Assessment and Support Services Program at 1-800-345- 9049.
The Chicago Department of Public Health provides mental health services for adults at locations across the city. Clinicians speak Spanish and English, with translation services available in other languages. To schedule an appointment, you can call 312-744-1906.
KNOWING YOUR RIGHTS AS AN IMMIGRANT
Every person has legal rights in the United States – including undocumented immigrants. The City has partnered with The Resurrection Project and other nonprofits to provide educational materials and trainings. Visit www.resurrectionproject.org or call 312-666-3062 for more information.
As a welcoming city and Sanctuary City, Chicago does not conduct immigration enforcement, and the Police Department will not ask about the immigration status of crime victims, witnesses, or other people who ask for help.
The City Colleges of Chicago have a variety of good English as a second language programs at different times.
There are also free classes available to those over 18 through the TEFL training program in Lincoln Park.
OTHER COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS
You can find a variety of different community organizations here.
If you are still having trouble finding the resources you need, reach out to us, as we may be able to point you in the right direction.