In the News: 2014 — the year for citizenship

For Wojciech Zolnowsky — our site leader in Detroit — there’s no better time than now to become a citizen.

In an opinion piece published in the Arab-American News, one of the most prominent Arabic media outlets in Michigan, Wojciech broke down the reasons why Arab-American legal permanent residents should take their first step towards citizenship with the New Americans Campaign:

Why follow through on citizenship now? Start with money and power.

First, the money: On the whole, naturalized citizens make more — a new citizen sees an average boost in individual earning of 8 to 11 percent. That makes naturalization a golden opportunity for the entire U.S. economy, which could see growth of $21 billion to $45 billion if all eligible immigrants become citizens.
Second, the power: New citizens can help steer our country, state and cities in the right direction. We are just beginning a critical election year, with a key governor’s race and important congressional elections coming up. Citizenship gives you a voice on big challenges such as health care, the economy, foreign policy and immigration — not to mention numerous local issues that affect us. Citizens have the responsibility and opportunity to elect the right men and women to handle those challenges in the coming years.
On a more practical level, upcoming changes to the citizenship application form offer an incentive to apply for citizenship now. In coming months, the N-400 form is expected to double in length. Although citizenship will remain achievable, applying for it could be more time-consuming. Thankfully, that change is still a few months away.
Check out the full story at the Arab-American News and learn more about the work of the Detroit New Americans Campaign collaborative.

Posted on January 22, 2014

Our Impact

  • The Campaign has completed over 3,700 naturalization workshops and clinics.
  • Over 250,000 citizenship applications completed since July 2011.

    Saved aspiring citizens and their families over $206million in legal and application fees.
  • Adopted scalable technology. MP3 players, Google Voice, and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services are being used to enhance naturalization service delivery.
  • Expanded New American Workforce (an effort to provide naturalization assistance within corporations) which has partnered with over 100 businesses across the nation, ranging from hotels in Miami to American Apparel in Los Angeles.
  • Deployed Citizenshipworks, an online tool, across the Campaign in multiple settings and languages. A newly redesigned platform guides applicants through through their citizenship application from start to finish and connects applicants to legal help at partnering non-profits.
  • Were instrumental in inspiring the US Citizenship and Immigration Service to support the Citizenship Corners initiative.
  • Created innovative partnerships with public libraries, school districts, universities, social service agencies, and employers, all of which yield not only greater numbers of applicants but also greater awareness of the naturalization process.
  • Deployed a large-scale volunteer recruitment program through an e-learning course.

    Reached diverse communities. Local partners consistently outreach and provide culturally competent and language-appropriate services.
Learn more from our
Impact Report.

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Who We're Helping

People come to America from all over the world with dreams of achieving a better life for themselves and their families and calling this great nation home. Eight million people who live, work, and pay taxes in this country are eligible for citizenship, yet only about eight percent of them naturalize each year. Find out more about these individuals and the barriers they face.Read More