Citizenship at Risk: New Obstacles to Naturalization
Laurie Joyce, Jeff Chenoweth, Laura Burdick, and Molly McKenna
Citizenship is an integral part of the democratic process, affording rights and privileges, as well as triggering important responsibilities. This report describes the impact of denaturalization on stripping persons of citizenship, as well as the effects of backlogs, poor service, and high application fees on access to citizenship. It also details the difficulties faced by the sick and disabled, and the improper denial of naturalization applications based on the good moral character requirement, and how lack of oversight and inconsistent test administration contribute to naturalization denials. It urges a fairer approach to protecting and administering this bedrock of American democracy.