Torres Highlights Importance of Citizenship and Civic Participation
ONTARIO, CA – This past week, Rep. Norma J. Torres (D-Pomona) highlighted the importance of naturalization and civic participation through events geared toward helping eligible residents earn their citizenship.
“As a naturalized citizen, I know how important it is to take this step, and I commend those who are putting in the time, money, and effort to become full-fledged citizens of the United States,” said Torres. “I myself waited a long time to become a citizen, and it wasn’t until Prop 187 I felt that, despite having grown up here and being an active, productive member of the community, my rights were under attack. We find ourselves in a similar situation today. At a time when immigrant communities are feeling increasingly threatened, it’s more important than ever for those of us who can to take full advantage of the rights we have in this country.”
On Thursday, Torres visited a citizenship class at the Chaffey Adult School in Ontario to speak with students taking a course to prepare for their naturalization exam. Then Saturday, Torres hosted a naturalization workshop in conjunction with the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA),the National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO), San Bernardino Community Services, Inc., and the Training Occupational Development Communities Legal Center (TODEC), for those interested in becoming citizens to learn about the process and have their questions answered by legal professionals.
“I appreciated the opportunity to share my story and my experiences, and to remind attendees that being a U.S. citizen is a privilege that holds great responsibility,” continued Torres. “I encourage those who gain their citizenship to make sure they not only register to vote but that they also get involved and stay informed and to make sure they hold their local, state, and federal elected officials accountable.”
Torres immigrated to the United States from Guatemala at the age of five. Residents of the 35th congressional district who have questions about the naturilization process or have had issues with federal agencies, may call Torres’s Ontario office at (909) 481-6474 for assistance.