citizenship

Immigration

Citizenship applications backlog leaves thousands with cases pending

Mary has helped hundreds of immigrants gain U.S. citizenship, but she hasn’t had the same luck with her husband’s case, one of more than 11,000 applications currently pending in Arizona. That is nearly double the backlog of 6,307 cases at the end of 2015, according to data from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Nationwide,

Immigration

Dreamers in Arizona have mixed feelings about Biden’s immigration plan

On his first day in office, President Joe Biden sent to Congress his plan to reform the U.S. immigration system. The bill includes preserving the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, and outlines a path to permanent residence and citizenship for its recipients. That includes Reyna Montoya, an activist in Phoenix who came

Immigration

Biden immigration plan opposed by GOP, conservative groups

Republican lawmakers and conservative groups opposed President-elect Joe Biden’s forthcoming immigration plan Tuesday as massive amnesty for people in the U.S. illegally, underscoring that the measure faces an uphill fight in a Congress that Democrats control just narrowly. In a further complication, several pro-immigration groups said they would press Biden to go even further and

National

Judge halts fee hike that would have nearly doubled cost of citizenship

A federal judge late Tuesday blocked a steep increase in application fees set to take effect Friday for people seeking U.S. citizenship, an increase that advocates feared would have locked many immigrants out. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White said that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services did not follow proper procedures when it ordered the higher

National

USCIS scrambles to resume naturalizations after COVID-19, budget cuts

Arizona nursing assistant Perla Macias dreamed of the day when she would be sworn in as a citizen after 15 years living in the U.S. – followed by a big family celebration afterward. She was on the verge of realizing that dream when it was derailed for six months this spring, first by COVID-19 and

National

USCIS delays furloughs with ‘drastic cuts’ that sharply reduce service

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said it is making “drastic cuts” that will affect all agency services, including naturalizations, in order to avoid furloughs of nearly 70% of its workforce at the end of this month. Immigration advocates worried Wednesday that the cuts would add to an already large backlog of cases and that

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