Service & Solidarity Spotlight: Arizona Labor Unions Host Successful Citizenship Fair, with More in the Works

Arizona citizenship fair

Working people across the United States have stepped up to help out our friends, neighbors and communities during these trying times. In our Service & Solidarity Spotlight series, we’ll showcase one of these stories every day. Here’s today’s story.

Arizona labor organizers, union members, immigration lawyers and their clients filled the Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) Local 86 hall in Phoenix last month for the Arizona AFL-CIO’s inaugural citizenship fair.

Nearly two dozen applicants worked closely with lawyers and union volunteers to fill out applications for naturalization, known as the N-400, to complete their last step to becoming a U.S. citizen. Once those forms were complete, attendees were directed to head straight to the post office to mail them off to avoid a higher filing fee. The Arizona AFL-CIO has been planning this free community fair for around three months, with more planned for the future, and every volunteer was a local union member. Organizers noted that, for a number of applicants, they were motivated to become naturalized citizens in order to finally have a say in the election process, which often decides where their tax dollars go.