News & Views

Citizenship Advocacy: May 2021

Have you (or someone you know) had difficulties applying for citizenship or another immigration benefit through USCIS? 

On April 18, 2021, USCIS issued a request for comments from customers regarding barriers to USCIS immigration benefits and services. 

The more people who send their concerns, the more likely it is that they will respond!

Submit your comment here through the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) website.

The deadline for comments is midnight (Eastern) on May 19. You can view all the comments submitted so far here.

Not sure what to talk about? Here are a few talking points:

  1. Not being able to apply to naturalize or for another benefit because of the fees or having a hard time applying for a fee waiver. Solutions:
    • Make fees cheaper (or at least make applying for fee waivers easier)
  2. Unacceptably long wait times. Solutions:
    • End in-person interviews for green cards for asylees and refugees since they were recently vetted
    • Hire more staff and open more offices
    • Create the opportunity for same day oath ceremonies for citizenship
    • Get rid of extreme-vetting which is time consuming and puts disproportionate burden on low-income immigrants, without resulting in meaningful change
  3. No longer have USCIS make referrals to ICE.
  4. Make naturalization an easy process for any long term resident, rather than an obstacle course individuals have to jump through. Solutions:
    • Better multilingual marketing
    • Invest in technology that makes it easier to apply for benefits
  5. Simplify the form and adjudication process for medical waivers.