For Immediate Release
July 27, 2007
Contacts: Becky Belcore, KRCC, 773.506.9158
Eun Sook Lee, NAKASEC, 323.937.3703, ext. 205
Yu Soung Mun, YKASEC, 718.460-5600
Dae Joong Yoon, KRC, 323.937.3718
NAKASEC Statement on Opposing USCIS Fee Hikes –
Another Barrier to Civic Participation
“Immigrants applying for naturalization want to fully participate in America’s rich civic life. These fee hikes represent yet another barrier for immigrants. For low-income immigrants and their families who are struggling to make ends meet, these exorbitant fee increases prey on their economic vulnerability,” said EunSook Lee, Executive Director, NAKASEC.
“On top of the fee hikes, immigrants are facing anti-immigrant ordinances on the local level. Just last week, Prince William County in northern Virginia passed an ordinance that requires individuals using public services, such as the hospitals, libraries, and parks to show their immigration status. It is unjust and inhumane to deny immigrants these basic rights,” said Dae Joong Yoon, Executive Director, KRC.
One naturalization applicant seeking services at KRC had this to say about the fee hikes,
“I need to wait 3 months to meet the 5 years continuous residency requirement. At first when I realized that I would have to pay $275 more, I just wanted to forget the naturalization process. But, I think the right thing to do is to have a voice in my community and my country. With that voice I can fully participate in American society. Then, in the future, I can oppose these kinds of unjust measures towards immigrants, like the fee hikes, by voting.”
To promote and facilitate the full civic participation of the Korean American community and other immigrant communities, NAKASEC and its affiliates will continue to work on naturalization drives, voter registration, and voter education campaigns.