USCIS Listening Session: Immigration Protection for Stateless Individuals Living in the United States
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services invites you to participate in a listening session on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Eastern. The listening session is for stakeholders to provide individual feedback on immigration protection for stateless individuals living in the Unites States. This engagement is part of the implementation of the Department of Homeland Security’s commitment, announced on Dec. 15, 2021, to enhance protections for stateless individuals in the United States. USCIS is committed to public engagement, and listening sessions like this one provide valuable feedback as we work to improve our programs.
Topics of interest and questions for consideration: USCIS is interested in any feedback regarding immigration protections for stateless people living in the United States, including the following topics:
1. Terms and Definitions
- The 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees define a stateless person as “a person who is not considered as a national by any state under the operation of its laws.” USCIS is considering whether to adopt this definition or a modified version of it for immigration purposes.
- What country or term should be used in the country of birth or country of nationality fields for a stateless person seeking documents such as Employment Authorization Documents, Lawful Permanent Resident Cards, I-94 cards, and Certificates of Naturalization and Citizenship?
- USCIS is working to understand the primary challenges of stateless people living in the United States today.
- Without congressional action, USCIS does not have the legal authority to create an immigration status or path to naturalization for individuals based solely on statelessness, but we are considering what existing immigration protections stateless individuals might be eligible for and benefit from, and how to maximize their access to such protections.
3. Evidentiary Issues and Determination Process
- What should USCIS consider in developing a process for determining whether an individual is considered stateless for immigration purposes? (For example, a process could be primarily paper-based or involve an interview in some or all cases.)
- What types of evidence would be useful in determining whether an individual is stateless?
- How easy or difficult would it be for stateless people to obtain such evidence?
- What else should USCIS consider about the types of evidence that would be useful for determining whether an individual is stateless?