The City’s new ‘We are Fort Collins’ multilingual banners are one of many ways the City is working on our commitment to celebrate diversity and support an inclusive community, where all our residents and visitors feel valued. The banners were in response to suggestions from community members that a visual symbol of different languages spoken in Fort Collins would be one powerful way to demonstrate our diversity and foster a sense of belonging, especially for those for whom English is a second language.
Recognizing that there wouldn’t be room to put all languages on a banner, we focused our selection of languages based on the level they are spoken within the community as a starting place. We drew upon Poudre School District’s annual reports and their Department of Language, Culture and Equity, Census data, and recommendations from a cultural competency trainer. Once these languages were identified, we reviewed the list with several local groups and worked with translators to ensure accuracy and consider cultural sensitivities. We also included Ute and Arapaho with the help of Colorado State University’s Native American Cultural Center to acknowledge the ancestral language and place name of this land.
These banners are meant to be a positive sign, and we certainly wouldn’t want any of our residents to feel excluded. We are grateful to our community members who have spoken up with ideas for how to improve these banners. We are happy to announce that we will print new banners with additional languages, such as more representing African cultures, Hebrew and others, to represent even more cultures. The updated design will also focus on increasing readability. The new banners will be up as soon as practical, within the next several weeks.
The City is working with various community partners to improve and enhance the ways we engage, provide services and develop overall best practices to be more equitable and inclusive. These banners are just one of many efforts as we work towards establishing a more comprehensive strategy and collaborations with our community.
Making Fort Collins a place where all feel welcome, safe and valued is a group effort and work in progress. Do you have an idea to share? Let us know at https://ourcity.fcgov.com/PublicEngagement
All languages other than English read “I am Fort Collins” while the English reads “We are Fort Collins”. This was meant to create a sense of ownership and inclusion when people read the statement in their native languages.
Korean: 저는 Fort Collins입니다.
Tagalog: Ako ay si Fort Collins
Hindi: मैं फोर्ट कोलिन्स हूं
Chinese: 我是 Fort Collins
Russian: Я Форт Коллинз
Spanish: Soy Fort Collins
English: We are Fort Collins
Arabic: نحن فورت كولنز
Arapaho: Neneeninoo Nii'eihii 3io'kut
French: Je suis Fort Collins
Ute: Nuu gat Fort Collins
German: Ich bin Fort Collins
Portugese: Eu sou Fort Collins
Japanese: 私は Fort Collinsです
Vietnamese: Tôi là Fort Collins