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About 315,000 immigrants in the U.S. won’t be citizens in time to vote this November because the COVID-19 pandemic delayed their ceremonies and interviews, according to a report from Boundless Immigration, a Seattle-based company that helps with naturalization services. That includes 8,000 people in the swing state of Pennsylvania. Naturalization offices were closed from March through April due to the coronavirus pandemic, and interviews that would’ve happened in that time have yet to be completed. Usually anyone taking a naturalization interview between April and August would’ve been able to meet voter registration deadlines for a November election, the company said. PGH City Paper
In other national immigration…
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Trump to Reportedly Send HSI Agents to Chicago
President Trump plans to send about 150 federal agents to Chicago to join police in crime-fighting efforts, The Chicago Tribune reports. The agents will come from Homeland Security Investigations, a wing of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement focused on crime that also does some immigration enforcement. What exactly the agents will be doing has not been made public. An ICE official in Chicago said the HSI agents would not be involved in immigration for deportation matters. Trump recently said he was considering deploying federal agents to Chicago and other cities to combat protests. The Chicago Tribune
ICE Transfers Detainees Despite Court Order
At the end of April, Florida federal Judge Marica Cooke ordered ICE to begin letting people out of its immigration jails because they turned into a breeding ground for the coronavirus. In Arizona, advocates brought several lawsuits forth on behalf of detained people in an attempt to get them released. But instead of releasing the detainees, ICE transferred 74 detainees to ICA Farmville, a for-profit prison in central Virginia. Employees at Farmville had warned ICE to not transfer any detainees there. Soon after, 51 detainees at the facility tested positive for the coronavirus. The Daily Beast
Seven Detainees Transferred After Sueing ICE Over Detention Conditions
Stephen Brown was recently woken up at 4 a.m., loaded into a van, and then put on a plane to Texas and then to Louisiana, and finally driven to a detention center in Alabama. Brown soon learned six other detainees were being transferred from the jail he was originally held at in Clinton County, Pennsylvania, and like him, they were all part of an ACLU lawsuit for their freedom. Brown has high blood pressure and argued exposure to the coronavirus was particularly dangerous to him. But the journey ICE took Brown on exposed him to numerous people and left him in a facility that had 20 active coronavirus cases when the facility where he was at had none. Mother Jones
California Advocates Work to Overcome COVID Testing Barriers in Latinx Community
COVID-19 has hit people of color particularly hard in California, where Latinx residents are three times more likely to test positive than white residents. The majority of essential workers in the state are Black or Latino, which has increased their chances of exposure. But that has also made them afraid to get tested and have to quarantine and miss work, furthering coronavirus spread even more. In San Francisco’s Mission District, the Latino Task Force successfully got the city to pass a wage replacement program to encourage people to stay home and quarantine if they test positive. The Los Angeles Times
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