Executive Order 1 (2015)

Executive Order Number 15-01 (PDF, 149 KB)


State Of Illinois Executive Department - Springfield, Illinois 

Executive Order Establishing Governor's New Americans' Welcoming Initiative

WHEREAS, 12% of Illinois’ population are immigrants and 20% of the State’s population are either immigrants or children of immigrants; and

WHEREAS, immigrants contribute to the economic, social, and political vitality of the United States and Illinois; and

WHEREAS, immigration policy is set at the federal level, but the actual benefits and challenges of immigration are felt at the state and local levels; and

WHEREAS, a proactive policy for New Americans at the state level will maximize the benefits immigrants bring to the State and its municipalities, while helping immigrants overcome the challenges they face; and

WHEREAS, it is beneficial for new immigrants, the host communities, and the State, to work cohesively to provide New Americans with the opportunities they need in order to become fully integrated; and

WHEREAS, the State of Illinois plays a vital role in building upon the strengths of immigrants, enabling their speedy transition to self-sufficiency; and

WHEREAS, the State of Illinois has historically been a national leader in supporting immigrant integration into life in the United States; and

WHEREAS, the State of Illinois currently operates ten Welcoming Centers throughout the State that offer information on many State and local community health, employment, training, and education benefits available in our State; and

WHEREAS, as a result of President Obama’s recent executive action on immigration, it is possible that 4% of the population of the State of Illinois would benefit and be able to secure temporary administrative relief; and

WHEREAS, State of Illinois Agencies maintain records that can be used by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services to verify residency of applicants for administrative relief purposes;

THEREFORE, I, Pat Quinn, Governor of Illinois, by virtue of the executive authority vested in me by Article V of the Constitution of the State of Illinois, do hereby order as follows:

  1. The Governor’s Office of New Americans shall designate a liaison in each State agency that maintains records verifying individual residency, including but not limited to the Department of Human Services, the Department of Health and Family Services, the Illinois State Board of Education, the Illinois Housing Development Authority, and the Department of Revenue, to coordinate the State’s efforts to implement best practices, policies, and procedures for assisting those seeking federal administrative relief.
  2. The State of Illinois shall develop a clear, seamless, and written process for federal administrative relief applicants to obtain records from State Agencies to verify their state residency for the federal application process.
  3. State Agencies shall provide information on how to obtain records, the cost (if any) of records, and the estimated time before records will be made available to requesters. Records may include, but are not limited to: public benefits records, including All-Kids statements, immigration records, medical records, school immunization records, income tax records, employment records, food assistance records, and housing records.
  4. The Governor’s Office of New Americans shall provide educational materials related to fraud prevention and resources regarding the federal administrative relief application process as they become available on the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services website or other federal websites.
  5. The State of Illinois Welcoming Centers shall act as information centers for federal administrative relief applicants and provide access to multilingual interpreters and translators.

SEVERABILITY If any provision of this Executive Order is found invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect.

EFFECTIVE DATE This Executive Order shall take effect immediately upon filing with the Secretary of State.

Pat Quinn
Governor of Illinois

Issued by the Governor:
Filed with the Secretary of State: