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17 September 2010

A Celebration of Citizenship

(As published in La Opinión. Also in Spanish)

On September 17, 1787, delegates in Philadelphia signed our nation’s Constitution and indelibly committed us to the highest ideals of a democracy. We commemorate this noble act by celebrating Constitution Day and Citizenship Day each September 17 in cities and towns across our country.

As administrators of our nation’s immigration system, we at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) take pride when we welcome as citizens individuals from all over the world who have embraced our nation’s Constitutional principles, those enshrined by the delegates in Philadelphia so many years ago. For us, the week of September 17 is a week of commemoration and celebration as we administer the oath of allegiance to new Americans in naturalization ceremonies from coast to coast.

Congress and the President have provided extraordinary leadership in their commitment to citizenship and, thereby, to our nation’s founding ideals. They have funded at unprecedented levels our citizenship and immigrant integration programs, which offer needed support for the more than eight million permanent residents who are eligible to apply for citizenship but who have not yet done so.

Today we are honored to announce nearly $8 million in grants, through the Citizenship and Integration Grant Program, to 75 organizations across the country. With this funding, the recipient organizations will expand citizenship resources and build capacity to prepare immigrants for citizenship. USCIS will also unveil today a free online Citizenship Resource Center that provides immigrants, teachers, and organizations with a one-stop portal for locating citizenship resources.

At a time when state and local governments face budget shortfalls and programs supporting English language learning and citizenship are particularly hard hit, these federal contributions provide critical support in our communities.

During the past year, we have furthered our commitment to citizenship and integration in other ways as well. Our website is now available in both English and Spanish and application status and processing times can be tracked online. Local USCIS offices regularly open their doors by hosting free public information sessions on citizenship eligibility and the naturalization process. We also began a partnership with the City of Los Angeles to promote immigrant integration through proactive citizenship awareness, education, and outreach activities.

In the past year, USCIS made improvements to the naturalization process by fully implementing a more meaningful and uniformly-administered naturalization test. Since then, the national pass rate has averaged 92 percent, demonstrating that applicants who study and thoroughly prepare can ultimately pass the test. Naturalization processing times have also improved dramatically, to less than five months across the country.

American citizenship is a unique bond that unites people around civic ideals and a belief in the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the United States Constitution. Being American is not about one’s religion, the color of one’s skin, or the place of one’s birth. Citizenship transcends our differences by bestowing upon us all equal rights and responsibilities. Please join me in recognizing Constitution Day and Citizenship Day as a celebration of the unifying principles that define our past and ensure our future as a beacon of hope and opportunity for the world.

Alejandro Mayorkas
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Department of Homeland Security



At September 17, 2010 at 9:26:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even the Director of USCIS knows immigrants better than anyone else.

Just a simple calculation. Total number of EB2 Pending is 34325 which includes the Dependents also.

That means Only 17K Advance professional knowledge holder(Primary) case are pending. These 17K jobs are taken in High profile industry or Phd Holders in University which the country needs to grow. That is no where near the unemployment ( Manufacture and Retail market) around 8 Million there.

The Immigrants are high income generators & eventually pay higher Tax back to the country. They Buy Big houses and Multiple cars which again benefit the country.

we want USCIS to allow Filling the EAD and AC21 for all EB2 Applicants irrespective retrogressed country.

Why there is Delay in posting that INTERNAL MEMO?

Everyone Talks about Illegal People Who are not even paying a Dime to USCIS but the people who are paying are not getting service.

For Example : I-129 Extension which as per your website is 2 months for CSC center but reality is they are still processing May13th Filed application for Regular. Being Most of the Candidate are FORCED to upgrade to PREMIUM processing due to DMV rules to submit the Approved I-1797A. Is it something DIRECTOR of USCIS wanted to get more money from Applicants? If not please do the needful. The status is off due to the Premium processing.

The Timeline should split by NORMAL and PREMIUM processing.

At September 22, 2010 at 2:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous JoeF said...

"Actually it was a republic, which means equal representation, not mob rule. Everyone seems to mess this up."

The US actually is a democratic republic.
See, e.g., Martin Diamond's well-known book "The Founding of the Democratic Republic":
Should be in the library of everybody who discusses politics.

At September 27, 2010 at 12:07:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Asim Rana said...

Please post the Quarterly Employment Based I-485 Inventory...last one was from May.


At September 27, 2010 at 12:10:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When is the EB I-486 Inventory going to be posted for August 2010?

At September 27, 2010 at 11:01:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When we should expect USCIS I-485 pending inventory list?

At October 5, 2010 at 7:48:00 AM EDT , Anonymous b said...

Director sir, Please give some peace and justice to EB community.

We are waiting for almost one decade to get our LPR.

Please allow us to file AOS after I-140 approval.

Thank you

At October 18, 2010 at 11:17:00 AM EDT , Anonymous B said...

Dear Sir, I read some news about USCIS thinking to allow pre-registration (for 485) for the folks who have approved 140. Is that true? If that is, do we get EAD and Advance Parole for pre-registration as well?
We are waiting for very long years to get our GC. We could buy a house here, but we are holding until we get our GC. Please provide us some relief and help us.

At October 31, 2010 at 8:05:00 PM EDT , Anonymous larry said...

I am proud to be an American and am grateful that we can share that privilege with others. We have many people saying that we need to close our borders. I think that America is still the land of opportunity. Let invite others to share in it.


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