Citizenship Day Saturday at BBCC

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Courtesy photo Volunteers will be at the ATEC building on the Big Bend Community College campus Saturday to help legal residents with information about and applications for U.S. citizenship.

MOSES LAKE — Legal residents of the U.S. can receive help in applying for citizenship at the annual Citizenship Day clinic at Big Bend Community College. The clinic will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday in the college’s ATEC building, or until 60 people have received assistance.

The clinic is free, but the citizenship filing fee is $725. Low-income applicants might be eligible for a fee waiver, and Citizenship Day participants will get help filling out the fee waiver application.

It’s hosted by OneAmerica, Hand in Hand Immigration Services, and the Washington chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

Organizers are looking for local Spanish-speaking volunteers to help interpret for clients. Volunteers are asked to register in advance at www.wanewamericans.org.

“At Citizenship Day, a team of volunteer immigration attorneys, paralegals, interpreters and other community volunteers help eligible immigrants fill out the 20-page application for U.S. citizenship,” wrote Tiffany Sukola, BBCC’s communications coordinator.

People who want to apply should “come prepared so that attorneys can provide high quality legal advice,” Sukola wrote. The New Americans website has a list of documents and information required, she wrote.

“Citizenship is a critical part of the American dream for many immigrant families, but the cost of attorneys and fear of the process stop many eligible people from becoming citizens,” said Sarah Sumadi of OneAmerica.

This is the 10th anniversary of the Citizenship Day program. The 2017 Citizenship Day provided consultations to 531 people around the state, assisted by 375 volunteers.

People who have questions can contact the organization’s multilingual assistance number, 206-926-3924, by text or by leaving a message. Faster service comes from texting.

Cheryl Schweizer can be reached via email at education@columbiabasinherald.com.

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