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New Data Shows Significant Increase in Citizenship Applications in 2016


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Press Contact: Thanu Yakupitiyage,  Main Phone: 212 627 2227 X235,  Cell Phone: 413-687-5160,  E-mail: tyaku@nyic.org
New York  (Wednesday, September 14, 2016)

New Data Shows Significant Increase in Citizenship Applications in 2016

According to USCIS data published this morning, 926,189 individuals have applied to become American citizens nationally since this time last year. In a typical year, naturalization numbers hover around 650,000. The national data from the third quarter of FY 2016 shows a 32.1 percent spike in naturalization applications over the same quarter of FY 2015. Year to date, FY 2016 has seen a 24.8 percent spike in applications over FY 2015. New York State saw a 25.1% increase in citizenship applications in the last quarter.

The recent data from quarter three correspond to the most concentrated push of the National Partnership for New American’s (NPNA) Stand Up to Hate campaign. In the past year, NPNA members—including New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC), PLAN, CHIRLA, ICIRR, FLIC, CIRC, CASA, Make the Road, OneAmerica, TIRRC, and many more--have held over 500 workshops across the country, assisting over 15,000 legal permanent residents, commonly known as green card holders, to become American citizens. 

New York Immigration Coalition’s executive director Steve Choi, who is also the co-chair of NPNA, said, “The spike in citizenship applications in New York are a demonstration of our work across New York State to support immigrant communities by empowering them to apply for citizenship if they are eligible, and subsequently supporting them with the application process. Through working closely with our partners and legal services organizations in New York, we have provided more resources for immigrants who are sometimes unsure about the process and their eligibility. The work doesn’t stop here- we will keep empowering our communities, including this Saturday at our “Citizenship Day” event, to continue to send the message that our communities embrace immigrants and their contributions.”

Allan Wernick, director of CUNY Citizenship Now!,NYIC’s partner for “Citizenship Day” on September 17th said, "These numbers reflect our experience at Citizenship Now! Our offices and events are overwhelmed with green card holders wanting to naturalize. With the nation debating immigration policy, those most affected want their voices heard."

Citizenship Day 2016 takes place on this Saturday, September 17. NPNA members have organized 52 Citizenship Day events across the country. In New York, NYIC, along with CUNY Citizenship Now! and the New York State Office of New Americans will host a legal and resource clinic that will support close to three hundred New Yorkers with their citizenship applications and other resources.

For a fact sheet on the recent naturalization numbers from NPNA, click HERE.

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The New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC)  is an umbrella policy and advocacy organization for nearly 200 groups in New York State that work with immigrants and refugees. The NYIC aims to achieve a fairer and more just society that values the contributions of immigrants and extends opportunity to all by promoting immigrants’ full civic participation, fostering their leadership, and providing a unified voice and a vehicle for collective action for New York’s diverse immigrant communities.


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