On Saturday, April 5th CMS hosted a very successful Citizenship Application Assistance Workshop at Immaculate Conception Parish in Astoria, Queens. Nearly 100 legal permanent residents had their citizenship applications completed with the assistance of CMS staff members and volunteers.
CMS’ partnership with The New Americans Campaign provides legal permanent residents with the opportunity to access free and much needed citizenship application assistance workshops. In these workshops the citizenship application is demystified with the assistance of some bilingual CMS staff members and volunteers.For many legal permanent residents the process to obtain citizenship can be confusing and complex because of language barriers. This compounded by costly legal fee can put the dream for United States citizenship out of reach. Despite these obstacles, the benefits of having citizenship can enhance the quality of life of individuals and strengthen families’ economic prospects in addition to providing families with stability.
The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) managed a hotline through which they screened and registered applicants. When applicants arrived at the workshop they were screened by CMS staff members or volunteers to ascertain if they were eligible for a fee waiver to forgo the $680 government application fee. Afterwards applicants had their N-400 applications filled out. This was the first workshop CMS hosted with the new and much longer N-400 form. The current version of the N-400 form will be obsolete after May 5th.
Applicants left excited to mail their applications and were appreciative of the diligence of CMS staff and volunteers.
Catholic Charities and Fidelis healthcare were on hand to give applicants information about healthcare and other resources to enhance their quality of life.
To see photos from our citizenship workshop click here.