January 30, 2020

Castro Introduces Resolution Designating February 2020 as National Citizenship Month

WASHINGTON—Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Vice Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, and member of the House Intelligence and Education and Labor Committees, today introduced the Citizenship Resolution designating February 2020 as National Citizenship Month:

“Across the globe, the United States is recognized for its opportunity and freedom. Our naturalization process allows immigrants to actively participate in those values and help strengthen our nation. In order to remain a beacon of innovation and advancement, we must continue that promise and welcome all immigrants into our nation with open arms,” said Congressman Castro. “In these divisive times, with a President who has founded his political career on demonizing the migrant community, we must overcome that hateful rhetoric with a celebration of our common values. All immigrants who work hard and make a home in this country deserve the opportunity to become citizens and participate in the democratic process. My resolution aims to give immigrants—who account for 13.6% of our population—the recognition they deserve.”

Background: Naturalization is the formal process by which citizenship is granted to immigrants after they have fulfilled requirements under the Immigration and Nationality Act. The average time it takes an aspiring American to be naturalized is now 7 to 10 months long, which is almost twice as long as it was two years ago, and in some cities the wait can even be as long as 31 months. Additionally, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has proposed significant hikes for naturalization fees, making citizenship unaffordable for 4 million eligible applicants. Encouraging permanent residents to become United States citizens should be viewed by Congress as an investment in our nation. This resolution serves to encourage eligible immigrants to start the long process toward citizenship, as well as remind us all of the importance of the citizenship process and how we must welcome those who are eligible to fully participate in our society as citizens.

For the full text of the resolution, click here.

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