More than 18,000 Seattle residents caught in citizenship backlog, city says

More than 500 people from 67 countries took the oath to become US Citizens at Seattle Center on July 4, 2017. (Photo by Susan Fried)

A growing national backlog of citizenship applications has left 18,707 Seattle residents in “limbo,” as of March of this year, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced in a Monday press release.

Durkan joined 50 other mayors throughout the country, sending a letter Monday to urge President Donald Trump to reduce the citizenship process to six months. Some naturalization applicants in Seattle are waiting as long as 20 months, according to Durkan’s office.

There are more than 753,000 citizenship application cases pending nationally, according to Durkan’s office.

Since the 2016 election, the number of applicants for citizenship surged, according to the nonprofit news organization Reveal. However, because the funding comes from citizenship applications collected the previous year, the funding has not kept pace with the increase in applications, Reveal reported.

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