New York City has expanded its NYCitizenship program to help immigrant parents of public school students become U.S. citizens, reported Beth Fertig of SchoolBook at WNYC.
The initiative, which launched last October to encourage city employees and their families to apply for citizenship, will now also reach out to parents of high school students.
The program will provide free immigration information, legal assistance and financial aid to eligible parents who are lawful permanent residents.
Fatimah Shama, Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, said more than 150,000 parents of New York City public school students are eligible for citizenship but they hold back for various reasons.
“Low English language proficiency, lack of knowledge about the application process and the cost of applying which at $680 can be significant for a parent in our public school system,” she explained.
The NYCitizenship website includes information on upcoming service events concerning the program, as well as the requirements necessary to apply for U.S. citizenship.