Obama urges legal permanent residents to become US citizens

AP , Thursday 17 Sep 2015

President Barack Obama arrives back at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015 (Photo: AP)

The White House is launching a national, multilingual public awareness campaign to help almost nine million legal permanent residents overcome barriers to become U.S. citizens.

In a video being released Thursday on Citizenship Day, President Barack Obama says that becoming a citizen is an "important step" that will make America stand strong.

Estimates show there are approximately 13.3 million legal permanent residents in the United States but only 8.8 million who are eligible to apply for citizenship.

The campaign was conceived by a task force created by Obama last November, all part of a package of presidential executive actions on immigration.

Almost 20 cities have joined the initiative, including New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., San Francisco, Seattle, Pittsburgh and Atlanta.

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