File Photo | Photo: Michael Beaton / Presidio of Monterey Public Affairs (Public Domain)

Governor JB Pritzker has announced $17 million in additional funding for Illinois municipalities to help them support migrants living in their communities.

Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) announced the latest round of funding on Tuesday.

The grant money being made available is in response to the more than 38,000 new arrivals sent to Illinois by Texas since 2022.

IDHS said in a statement that the funding is to advance their goal of specifically increasing migrant capacity outside of Chicago.

The funds will come from the previously announced $160 million in state funding.

The grants will make it possible for municipalities to provide direct services to migrants who have fled their homes to escape violence, political instability and other threats, according to IDHS.

The funds will be used for emergency needs, such as food and winter clothing.

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“This new funding builds on our commitment to support Illinois cities that are stepping up to help asylum seekers,” Pritzker said.

“As we continue to call for further federal support, and as Illinois takes a stand against the callous ways Texas Gov. Abbott is using human beings as political pawns, these grants will lend support where it is needed throughout the state,” Pritzker said.

The wraparound services the funding will cover include temporary shelter, emergency triage, case management, legal services, health screenings and immunizations, interpretation and translation services, workplace readiness, school enrollment, basic orientation on self-sufficiency options and strategies on how to become self-sufficient.

$11 million of the latest funding will be available exclusively to municipalities outside of Chicago that “welcome and support” migrants living in their communities.

The funds cannot be used to transport new arrivals to another municipality.

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Municipalities seeking grants are required to submit an application.

$4 million of the funding will support 13 welcoming centers in Illinois and $2 million of the funding will go to Immigrant Family Resources Program providers.

“We at the Illinois Department of Human Services are so grateful for the ongoing work being done in local communities throughout the state to support immigrants and help them be self-sufficient,” said Dulce M. Quintero, IDHS Secretary Designate.

“This administration continues to grow and foster these partnerships, providing care for and support to our new Illinoisans,” Quintero said.

In late September, Chicago, Elgin, Lake County, Urbana and Oak Park received the first round of grant funding. Lake County received $1 million.

Lake County officials told Lake and McHenry County Scanner they are still reviewing the latest funding announcement and have not decided whether to apply for it as they are waiting on further information from the state.

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