“America is Home” Initiative Will Expand Naturalization Efforts in New Cities Across the Country; Encouraging Greater Immigrant Participation in Naturalization Process


(June 8, 2018, Boston, MA) – Today the National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) announced theCities for Citizenship (C4C)“America is Home” Initiative, a bipartisan, $5 million challenge grant to promote naturalization in the U.S. “America is Home” is offered in cooperation with theNew Americans Campaign (NAC). NPNA and NAC are two leaders in the U.S. promoting naturalization.

America is Home is a four-year program to help municipalities and community partners encourage U.S. citizenship among eligible immigrants and increase naturalization application rates. NPNA’s launch of the initiative was included in remarks made by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti during a press conference in Boston on the first day of the annual meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. The announcement was made with Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait.

 “By empowering eligible residents to go naturalize, we help all residents become more integrated in our city social and economic fabric. We know that they will need to receive the knowledge, tools, and support necessary to guide them as they learn and apply for U.S. citizenship,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles.  “I am very happy to have been part of the effort to launch this initiative and thank NPNA and our municipal partners for making citizenship a priority.”

“Seeing immigrants take that final step towards becoming citizens always fills me with great pride. Citizenship unlocks better opportunities and a greater sense of security for our communities and our cities,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio of the City of New York. “I am encouraged that the America is Home Initiative will extend these benefits, supporting city leaders’ efforts to help new Americans naturalize.”

“For centuries, America has embraced those who embrace us,” Mayor Tait said. “This initiative continues that tradition by putting citizenship in reach for those who have chosen to make America their home. In Anaheim, new citizens are helping us build a stronger, more connected city where residents, regardless of where they are born, are connected by the shared experience of being Americans.”

America is Home will re-grant funds to 45 partnerships between municipalities and community organizations across the country to support new and emerging naturalization efforts in order to increase naturalization rates among the immigrant community. Two-year challenge grants of $25,000 or $40,000 a year will be issued annually to launch innovative, local citizenship campaigns. The grants will be distributed in 2018, 2019 and 2020 and will support partnerships between community-based organizations and Mayor’s offices to support new and emerging naturalization efforts in cities across the nation.

“The right to naturalize is as old as the nation itself and has long contributed to the diversity, richness, and strength of the United States,” said Eva Millona, NPNA co-chair, Executive Director of the MIRA Coalition and a naturalized citizen. “Unfortunately, there are millions of New Americans who are eligible for citizenship who have not applied. The America is Home Initiative responds to this need and moves us closer to welcoming more New Americans to this nation as citizens.”

Local governments across the U.S. have begun to recognize that investing in resources to help immigrants naturalize is money well spent. A summer 2014 C4C report shows that naturalized immigrants achieve an increase in earnings of 8 to 11 percent. Nearly 9 million people are currently eligible for U.S. citizenship, representing a potential $52 billion windfall for the national economy over the next decade if they are all naturalized.

More information on the “America is Home” Initiative can be accessed here, and can be obtained by registering here for the C4C “America is Home” Request for Proposals (RFP) Webinar, to take place on Thursday, June 14, 2018 (Flag Day), at 2:00 PM EST.

The “America is Home” Initiative will be administered by the National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA). Cities for Citizenship is co-chaired by Mayors Garcetti, Mayor Emanuel, and Mayor de Blasio of New York City. The Center for Popular Democracy is a member of the C4C Executive Committee, and Citi Community Development is the founding Corporate Partner. The C4C “America is Home” Initiative is offered in cooperation with the New Americans Campaign (NAC). NPNA and NAC are two leaders in the U.S. promoting naturalization and are well positioned to bring naturalization to scale and expand to new cities.

Join us in launching America is Home on social media via this America is Home Communications Toolkit!

For more information, contact Sarah Mesick, NPNA Director of Programs, at sarah@partnershipfornewamericans.org