The Refugee Haven South of Seattle: Nearly 40% of Tukwila’s population is foreign-born.

By Karen Weise, photographs by McNair Evans, Bloomberg BusinessWeek September 15, 2016

The Refugee Haven South of Seattle: Nearly 40% of Tukwila’s population is foreign-born.

After the 1990s tech boom drove up housing costs in Seattle, refugee resettlement agencies began placing immigrants in the neighboring city of Tukwila. The suburb had 834 foreign-born residents in 1990, according to U.S. census figures. Today almost 8,000 residents—about 40 percent of Tukwila’s population—are foreign-born.
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Hala Al Jandeel, 48, came to Tukwila three years ago from Jordan, where she taught math and was a school principal. The King County Library System asked her to start a weekly story time in Arabic and English, which mostly serves families from Iraq, Jordan, and Syria. The job is rewarding, she says. “The kids now read words and whole sentences. I teach the oldest grammar now—subject, object.” (Full article)