Immigration order could hurt Buffalo's economy

Feb 1, 2017

The leader of the region's private sector economic development organization is concerned about President Trump's executive order on immigration. And the impact it will have on Buffalo's refugee community.

Buffalo Niagara Partnership President and CEO Dottie Gallagher-Cohen said many refugees who resettled in Western New York are now valuable employees for local manufacturers and the tourism industry.

Dottie Gallagher-Cohen, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.
Credit Buffalo Niagara Partnership

"So certainly our employers are in need of that kind of skilled labor," Gallagher-Cohen said.

She understands national security is primary, but Gallagher-Cohen said she's concerned about how Trump's executive order is being implemented.

"If you look at entrepreneurship, a lot of the new businesses in Buffalo, and elsewhere, have been started by people who immigrated here," Gallagher-Cohen said.
And given population loss, she said, the region's ability to grow will depend, to some degree, on immigration.
"We're going to need the people to do the jobs to grow the economy. It's really, honestly, that simple," Gallagher-Cohen said.