C4C CELEBRATES REACHING 100 CITIES & COUNTIES COMMITTED TO INCREASING CITIZENSHIP ACCESS
Tamarac, Fla. (March 22, 2021) – The Cities for Citizenship (C4C) nonpartisan national initiative celebrates the milestone of 100 city and county partners. The initiative of cities and counties working to increase citizenship among eligible U.S. permanent residents and to encourage investment in citizenship and financial empowerment programs was co-founded by National Partnership for New Americans, Citi as the founding corporate partner, and the Center for Popular Democracy in 2014.
The C4C network has grown from its three founding cities of Chicago, New York and Los Angeles in 2014 to a robust network of now 100 cities and counties in 2021. The C4C network brings a group of diverse cities and counties, ranging from small, midsize to large cities and counties such as Santa Fe, NM, Honolulu, HI, Miami-Dade, FL and many more. In 2020, C4C welcomed the participation of Aurora, CO, El Paso County, TX, Austin, TX, Yolo County, CA, New Rochelle, NY, Cook County, IL, San Antonio, TX and Allegheny County, PA to the network. Tamarac, Florida is recognized as the official 100th city/county to join the network.
“Tamarac’s growing diversity is one of our greatest strengths,” said City Commissioner Mike Gelin, who championed Tamarac’s Cities for Citizenship membership. “I am the son of Haitian immigrants. I serve on a City Commission with colleagues of Jamaican and Nicaraguan heritage. In Tamarac, we prioritize the importance of citizenship. We celebrate and support the unique needs of our multicultural community members and their contributions to the fabric of our City. We strive to create an environment where residents can pursue citizenship ambitions with ease.”
“U.S. citizenship provides many rights and responsibilities, including the right to participate in our democracy through voting,” said Michelle J. Gomez, Mayor of Tamarac. “We know that among our 67,000 residents, about 40 percent of them are foreign born or speak languages other than English at home. We are excited about this opportunity to further assist residents on the path to citizenship in our wonderfully multicultural community. Tamarac is truly proud to be Cities for Citizenship’s 100th partner.”
“Today, we celebrate a milestone amongst a growing network of cities & counties that have been dedicated to investing in and supporting citizenship and immigrant communities across the country. We know that cities and counties thrive by fully welcoming and including immigrants; and, we are honored to coordinate a growing network of local leaders committed to supporting our immigrant communities and working to make citizenship accessible to all,” added Nicole Melaku, Executive Director of the National Partnership for New Americans.
“We are delighted that there are now 100 city and county partners unified in their commitment to immigrant communities through their membership in the Cities for Citizenship network. Cities and counties across the country have demonstrated true leadership by recognizing their immigrant constituents as an integral part of their communities and investing in their ability to thrive and fully participate in our democracy,” said Ana Maria Archila, Co-Executive Director of the Center for Popular Democracy.
“Citi is proud to welcome Tamarac, FL to Cities for Citizenship and celebrate this milestone, which reflects years of multisector collaboration and innovation,” said Michelle Thornhill, U.S. Director of Community Relations, Citi Community Investing & Development. “The C4C network has proven to be a vital resource for municipalities aiming to strengthen economic opportunity for legal permanent residents, their families and their communities.”
Over 9 million lawful permanent residents (LPRs) are eligible to naturalize across the United States – 52 percent of whom are low-income. Data shows that with naturalization, new citizens realize an eight to eleven percent increase in individual earnings, and home ownership increases by 6.3 percentage points. In addition to a host of benefits for individuals, naturalization can have important macroeconomic benefits for local communities. Cities for Citizenship has helped to break down barriers for those who might have otherwise missed out on applying for citizenship. In 2018, the C4C “America is Home” $5 million grant program was launched to support new and emerging naturalization efforts in order to increase citizenship rates among the immigrant community.
Over the past six years, the Cities for Citizenship initiative celebrates its impact of over:
- 2,845,929 people that have been reached through the C4C network with citizenship-related information
- 59,383 people who have received direct citizenship application assistance through C4C partners
- 38,659 people who received financial information and services (waivers, counseling, scholarship, loans and grant assistance) through a C4C partner
The Cities for Citizenship (C4C) initiative is co-chaired by Mayors Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles, Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot of Chicago, and Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City.
About Cities for Citizenship
Cities for Citizenship (C4C) is a growing national initiative of 100 cities and counties aimed at increasing citizenship among eligible U.S. permanent residents and encouraging localities across the country to promote and expand citizenship programs. It is chaired by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Chicago Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, with support from the Center for Popular Democracy and the National Partnership for New Americans. To learn more or join Cities for Citizenship, visit http://www.citiesforcitizenship.com.
About National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA)
The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) harnesses the collective power and resources of the country’s 41 largest regional immigrant rights organizations in 37 states. Our aim is to achieve a vibrant, just and welcoming democracy for all. Immigrants are the soul of our organization, and immigrant communities inspire, implement and champion our work. NPNA sponsors the annual National Immigrant Integration Conference and, in the past two years, NPNA partners have assisted over 50,000 immigrants to become U.S. citizens and pursue legal status.
About Center for Popular Democracy (CPD)
The Center for Popular Democracy works to create equity, opportunity and a dynamic democracy in partnership with high-impact base-building organizations, organizing alliances, and progressive unions. CPD strengthens our collective capacity to envision and win an innovative pro-worker, pro-immigrant, racial and economic justice agenda.
About the City of Tamarac
Tamarac, Florida covers a 12-square mile area in western Broward County and is home to more than 65,000 residents and approximately 2,000 businesses. Ideally situated, Tamarac provides easy access to highways, railways, airports and waterways, and a wealth of cultural and sports activities. Tamarac’s median age continues to grow younger and the population more diverse, as people recognize the City as a great place to spend their lives. For more information visit www.Tamarac.org.