Lots of folks in North Texas want to become U.S. citizens these days: Federal agency records show that the rate of applications for naturalization has risen by more than 20 percent in the last year.
But there’s a big problem in this area for would-be citizens: Most eligible residents speak little or no English, according to one group that deals with immigrants. The required interview and test for citizenship are conducted in English only. And while there are plenty of citizenship classes being offered in the Metroplex, few are taught by bilingual instructors.
“It is very sad that many classes only accept students who know English, leaving perhaps 75 percent of eligible green-card holders who have little or no proficiency [in English] in desperate need of help,” said Anne Marie Weiss-Armush, president of the nonprofit DFW International Community Alliance.