The U Visa A Path For Us Citizenship English 1010 Essay

2342 words - 10 pages

The U Visa: A Path for Undocumented Victims of Domestic Violence to Obtain United States Citizenship
Mitzi A Granados
Utah Valley University
English Saturday Morning Class
1010
Marjorie Jo Ralph
Running head: U NONIMMIGRANT STATUS LEADING TO U.S. CITIZENSHIP 1
U NONIMMIGRANT STATUS LEADING TO U.S. CITIZENSHIP 2
The U Visa: A Path for Undocumented Victims of Domestic Violence to Obtain United States Citizenship
Have you ever wondered how undocumented victims of domestic violence becomes United States citizens? Were you even aware that this was a possibility? Well it is very much possible if an undocumented victim of violence apply for immigration relief through a humanitarian visa called the U visa. Immigrants, whether legal or illegal, may apply for the U visa if they are victims of certain crimes, including stalking and domestic violence, and if they help law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution. 
The Department of Homeland Security released a statement expressing that “The U visa is in place largely to protect women and children who may be victims of crimes such as human trafficking, domestic violence, sexual assault and other abuse, but are afraid to report the crimes due to factors including the language barrier, cultural differences, lack of knowledge of U.S. laws and deportation fears” ("U and T visa," 2016)  It is my belief that very little is known by our society regarding the U visa, the reasons as to why and when this type of immigration relief is offered to undocumented victims of domestic violence and how the U visa can potentially lead to Unites States citizenship.
According to Michael Kagan from the University of Nevada “ twenty-five to forty-five percent of all the population in the United States are undocumented victims of domestic violence who seek some type of immigration alleviation” (Kagan, 2015, p. 916) Although illegal victims of violent crimes may receive temporary and permanent immigration relief to reside and work legally in the United States, these victims can still achieve United States citizenship through the U visa.
In this paper, I will first explore the requirements needed to apply for a U visa, then will move onto the benefits that this visa may contribute to undocumented victims of domestic violence and I will conclude with how this humanitarian visa can provide a path for United States citizenship for such sufferers. I will use five different sources from previous research that I did regarding this matter which I believe contained critical information that would be beneficial for my exploratory research paper.
My first research source which is an article by the American Immigration Council talks about when the U visa was created and the purpose behind this visa, It also mentions that in the last two decades, Congress has made numerous changes to the U.S. Immigration laws to offer protection for immigrant victims of domestic violence and crime.  According to the American Immigration Council:
“Congress...

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