FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 22, 2021
Contact: Courtney Holsworth
ILRC Responds to USCIS’s Reversal of Trump’s Civics Test
San Francisco, California — Melissa Rodgers, Director of Programs for The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC), released the following statement in response to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ (USCIS) decision to rescind the Trump administration’s revised citizenship test, and restore the 2008 version of the test.
“President Trump’s citizenship test was the product of bigotry and xenophobia, not civics, or a desire to improve the naturalization process. The Trump administration never provided a substantive rationale or legal justification for its new test, which was 30 percent longer and designed to be more difficult for applicants without a college education or advanced English-language fluency. The process to become a U.S. citizen has never been easy, and the Trump administration's civics test served only to make an already complicated process that much more difficult.
“We applaud USCIS and the Biden administration for taking this critical step, and we look forward to working with USCIS officials to repeal other needless and arbitrary policies making up the previous administration's ‘extreme vetting’ framework for adjudicating naturalization applications. This is essential for returning USCIS to its mission of customer service, and addressing the Trump administration’s massive naturalization backlog of more than 700,000 people.”
The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) is a national nonprofit that works with immigrants, community organizations, legal professionals, and policy makers to build a democratic society that values diversity and the rights of all people. Through community education programs, legal training & technical assistance, and policy development & advocacy, the ILRC works to protect and defend the fundamental rights of immigrant families and communities.