Countryside gives insight into Refugee experience after 40 migrants unexpectedly arrive  

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CHICAGO – With Chicago being one of several sanctuary cities across the U.S. receiving migrants with no coordination from southern cities transporting them, the City of Countryside is giving us first hand look at how refugee arrivals are being coordinated.

Although Countryside, located 44 minutes from downtown Chicago, said they were given no communication surrounding refugees arriving in their community.

“Neither the Mayor nor any City Official were notified beforehand that these individuals would be coming to our community.” The City posted in a lengthy statement to social media this week. Now 40 Venezuelan migrants, mainly women and children, are staying at a local Holiday Inn.  An effort coordinated by Illinois Department of Human Services, Cook County Government, and several social service agencies.

“The federal government has granted legal refugee status to these migrants, therefore they are legally permitted to be in the United States.” The City of Countryside said in a statement posted to Facebook this week.  “Unfortunately, there has been a great deal of misinformation in the community regarding this situation.”

Countryside officials assure the public no City resources have been used to house refugees, who receive health screenings at the border, and do not have the authority to prohibit anyone from staying at a hotel.  

The message comes after misinformation circulated when migrants first arrived this week.

The community is directing residents interested in providing financial assistance to refugees to contact Rincon Family Services at 312-852-0035.m or email contactus@rinconfamilyservices.org.


Among items listed for donation needs include:

Gift Cards, Large Suitcases/Duffle Bags, Adult

Clothing, Undergarments, Reusable Water Bottles.

Kids Items (ages 1-12) Needed:

Clothing Sizes (2-14), Undergarments and Socks,

Strollers, Pack-N-Plays, Toddler Plates/Sippy Cups,

Toys, Shoes.

Phones, electronics and sim cards are also needed for

accessing email and websites for immigration

communication.

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