Cities United For Immigration Action Leads Nationwide Events In Support Of Common Sense Reforms
Actions Include Naturalization Ceremonies, Citizenship Application Clinics, Partnerships with Public Libraries & Other Events
Events Taking Place In NYC, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Columbus, Dayton, Denver, Houston, New Brunswick, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle & St. Louis
NEW YORK – In celebration of Citizenship Day, cities nationwide are hosting events this week to support immigration integration initiatives and naturalization efforts, and to recognize the contributions that New Americans make to our country.
The nearly 100-member coalition Cities United For Immigration Action (CUIA) is partnering with the White House, National Partnership for New Americans, Cities for Citizenship, Welcoming America, and other national organizations, and dozens of cities and counties across the nation to highlight civic engagement efforts and common sense reforms as part of Citizenship Day.
These coordinated actions come at a crucial time in the national conversation. Countering the anti-immigrant rhetoric appearing in the national media, cities across the country are moving forward with pro-citizenship actions across the country as higher rates of naturalization lead to stronger, safer and more economically prosperous communities.
Nationwide actions hosted by cities taking place today and throughout the week include:
• New York City – Mayor de Blasio will host a naturalization ceremony on September 17 for 100 individuals representing 34 countries to celebrate the contributions new Americans make to our nation. In addition, labor, faith, and community-based organizations will coordinate a Citizenship Week of Action to offer free application assistance and outreach to encourage individuals to naturalize.
• Los Angeles – Mayor Garcetti’s Office will host a Children’s Citizenship Ceremony at the Los Angeles Central Library for September 17 for 200 individuals.
• Atlanta – The City of Atlanta will expand “Citizenship Corners” in public libraries, at local supermarkets and in City Hall on September 17 to promote naturalization as a tool for civic integration and for financial empowerment. In addition, City Hall hosted a naturalization ceremony earlier this week.
• Boston – The Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians is partnering on a massive clinic on September 26 to prepare 250 citizenship applications as well as a naturalization ceremony for 175 individuals.
• Buffalo – Mayor Brown hosted a walking tour of Buffalo’s West Side on September 16, highlighting local immigrant business owners & community members. The City also hosted a citizenship information session at City Hall.
• Columbus – The City will host a naturalization ceremony on September 17 where 40 individuals representing 32 nations will be sworn in.
• Dayton – The City will host a citizenship clinic at City Hall on September 17 to support efforts to increase applications.
• Denver – The City is partnering on a massive clinic on September 19 to prepare at least 150 citizenship applications.
• Houston – Mayor Parker will announce the launch of new “Citizenship Corners” in select Houston Public Libraries on September 17 and the city will host a citizenship & immigration forum to prepare applications on September 19.
• New Brunswick – A citizenship workshop will be held in early October to support efforts to increase the number of applications.
• Philadelphia – The City is partnering on a massive citizenship clinic on September 19 to help prepare nearly 200 citizenship applications.
• Pittsburgh – The City is hosting a citizenship clinic on September 19 with over 50 attendees to support efforts to increase the number of immigrant applicants.
• San Francisco – The City is partnering on a Pathways to Citizenship workshop on September 26 to provide free legal, application, and fee waiver assistance to eligible applicants for citizenship.
• San Jose – The City will host a Citizenship Day Celebration on September 17 at City Hall to promote immigration integration and citizenship applications, and partnered on a naturalization ceremony at the San Jose Earthquakes game on September 12.
• Seattle – Mayor Ed Murray will announce the launch of new “Citizenship Corners” in Seattle Public Libraries on September 17 to support efforts to increase the number of immigrant applicants, and the City will also host a naturalization ceremony.
• St. Louis – Mayor Slay will host a naturalization ceremony for 50 individuals on September 18.
“Citizenship is vital to promoting opportunity and equity – and cities are central to those goals, protecting and promoting the inclusion and diversity that make our country so great,” said New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. “From increased wages to higher rates of homeownership, citizenship helps families unlock critical civic and economic opportunity. This is core to CUIA's work to promote welcoming, inclusive cities and move the ball forward on national immigration action, and New York is proud to stand with these nearly 100 other cities.”
“Citizenship Month in Houston is a celebration of the many faces of our City with community driven events and programs,” said Houston Mayor Annise Parker. “In celebrating our diversity, we also raise awareness of the responsibilities of citizenship and what it means to be a Houstonian, encourage civic engagement and build bridges of understanding.”
“Our vibrant, multicultural community -- and our economy -- are stronger when we support immigrants and refugees on the path towards U.S. citizenship,” said Seattle Mayor Ed Murray. “We are building new partnerships to educate Seattle residents on the benefits of naturalization by providing citizenship information and access to resources around the city.”
"It gives me great pleasure to speak at the naturalization ceremony at the International Institute of St. Louis this week. When I see the proud faces of our new citizens, it gives me great hope for the growth of our region and our country,” said St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay. “By becoming an active citizen and participating in our community, new citizens help strengthen the very foundation of our region, contributing to the diversity, prosperity, strength and vitality of our neighborhoods. I know that when our region welcomes Syrian refugees, like we have welcomed Bosnian and other refugees, they will become contributing and voting citizens of our community as well."
“The City of Atlanta is proud to support Citizenship Day. I look forward to joining other cities in honoring the cultural and economic contributions of immigrants,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. “As the second leading metropolitan region for foreign born growth, it is critical that we continue to strengthen our standing as a global and inclusive community.”
Citizenship Day is a federal observance that recognizes the adoption of the U.S. Constitution and those who have become U.S. citizens. It is held on September 17 to commemorate the day that delegates to the Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution in 1787.
Cities United For Immigration Action (CUIA) is a coalition of nearly 100 cities and counties, launched in late 2014 to lead the effort to promote and execute immigration reforms nationwide.
Earlier this year, cities and counties in CUIA – representing 43 million people across the country – filed a friend-of-the-court brief arguing that the district court judge who temporarily blocked implementation of the new immigration programs failed to consider the significant harms to America’s local governments caused by this delay.
For more information on the actions cities are taking, visit: http://citiesforaction.us/