Queens residents looking for their own paths to citizenship can get the answers they need by dialing the free and confidential Citizenship NOW! immigration hotline between April 27 and May 1.
Sponsored by the New York Daily News and the City University of New York (CUNY), the 13th annual campaign will be open each day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. More than 400 trained volunteers will man the phones to assist callers of all backgrounds with the citizenship process.
Operators will answer calls in English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Russian, Korean, Italian, Haitian Creole, Bengali, Polish, French, Yiddish, Arabic and other languages.
“Great public universities such as CUNY are deeply committed to providing public service that improves the quality of life of our people,” CUNY Chancellor James B. Milliken said. “The call-in will help thousands of newcomers navigate the immigration maze on the path to U.S. citizenship, consistent with CUNY’s longstanding tradition of welcoming students who hail from countries throughout the world.”
The Daily News and CUNY first held the hotline in April 2004 “to address the lack of access to free and confidential immigration information for the people who need it most,” according to a press release.
“Volunteers will provide callers with information on how immigrants can qualify for legal status and U.S. citizenship under existing laws,” added attorney Allan Wernick, a Baruch College professor and leader of the campaign. “Our goal for the Citizenship NOW! call-in is to empower immigrant New Yorkers. Immigrants can’t wait for Congress and the courts to find them a path to citizenship. They need help now.”
The Citizenship NOW! call-in numbers will be announced on the Daily News website and on WXTV-TV and WABC-TV on April 27.