The U.S. grants citizenship to those who don’t know English

by Annalisa Lista - 2017.07.14
The U.S. grants citizenship to those who don’t know English
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More than 30% of American citizens of immigrant origins in the U.S. do not know how to either read or write in English. Which often creates and obstacle to social and economic integration. At least, this is the snapshot that has recently emerged in the last report of the Center for Immigration Studies. That, after analyzing the linguistic competence of a large sample of foreigners who acquired U.S. citizenship, discovered that as many as 5 million, of which half are Hispanics, are poor English speakers and writers. The reason? According to the experts, poor testing instruments used thus far, for obtaining citizenship. That consist of asking the candidate to read correctly one out of three sentences written in English. Criteria that – according to the authors – do not even minimally respond to the international parameters established by OCSE’s Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC). According to which “it is necessary to understand and use a language appropriately in different contexts in order to actively participate in the social and economic life of a country, and to reach one’s personal objectives and develop one’s true potential".

Published in Citizenship.
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