The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has awarded a $250,000 Citizenship and Assimilation Grant to Pittsburgh’s Jewish Family and Community Services to expand its capacity “to assist lawful permanent residents, including former refugees and asylees, with the naturalization process,” according to a press release from the office of U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.).
JFCS Immigration Legal Services provides attorneys and accredited representatives for free or at nominal cost to people seeking legal immigration related assistance.
Toomey wrote a letter supporting the organization’s grant application earlier this month.
“The Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Pittsburgh [now Jewish Family and Community Services] is one of the oldest and most experienced non-profit providers of immigration legal services in the Pittsburgh region, serving approximately 1,500 individuals annually,” said Toomey in a prepared statement. “This grant will provide significant assistance for lawful permanent residents applying for U.S. citizenship. I was pleased to support the Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Pittsburgh’s grant application and thank USCIS for recognizing the organization’s important work.”
The grant will aid JFCS — in its partnership with Literacy Pittsburgh — in helping low-income permanent residents “learn English, study for the citizenship test, receive legal representation, and become U.S. citizens,” said Jamie Englert, director of JFCS Immigration Legal Services in an email to the Chronicle. “Through citizenship, our clients will be able to take part in civic life, be eligible for more employment opportunities, and move forward with their American dream.” PJC
— Toby Tabachnick