Department of Neighborhoods
COVID-19 GUIDE FOR IMMIGRANTS AND REFUGEES CONNECTS RESIDENTS HARDEST HIT BY CORONAVIRUS TO ESSENTIAL RESOURCES
Guide available in Houston’s most spoken foreign languages
February 12, 2021 -- The City of Houston Department of Neighborhoods announces the publication of COVID-19 Guide to City of Houston Resources for Immigrants and Refugees, a new online multilingual resource.
Produced by the department’s Office of New Americans and Immigrant Communities (ONAIC), the guide provides basic COVID-19 prevention and recovery information for hard to reach residents at high risk for contracting the virus.
The guide is available in the languages most spoken in Houston, including Spanish, Vietnamese, Mandarin, Arabic, French, and English.
“Immigrants and refugees across the City of Houston have been disproportionately hard-hit by COVID-19,” said department director TaKasha Francis. “We want to reach those communities to stress the importance of getting tested, address questions and misinformation about the vaccine, and connect them to direly needed recovery services such as food assistance, help with evictions, and immigration services.”
“The pandemic has made it difficult to reach these communities at highest risk for contracting COVID-19,” said ONAIC manager Terence O’Neill. “One of the challenges we face in reaching immigrants and refugees is the language barrier, for many are non-English speakers.”
The guide features FAQs about COVID-19 symptoms, testing, contact tracing, and vaccines. It also directs residents to agencies that offer recovery resources such as food and PPE supplies, rental assistance, legal guidance, help with immigration matters, services for people with disabilities, and social service referrals.
The City also offers language access assistance for non-English speakers and American Sign Language interpretation for the deaf and hard of hearing at testing and vaccination sites.