The number of people who became naturalized US citizens rebounded in fiscal year 2021 after the Covid-19 pandemic previously had prompted office closures and service disruptions for US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Around 808,000 people were naturalized during the fiscal year, which ended September 30, compared with 625,400 people in fiscal year 2020, according to data provided by the agency.
After struggles with processing and financial issues related to the Covid-19 pandemic, the agency has been able to ramp up naturalizations, said USCIS Director, Ur Jaddou.
“It is a tremendous value to the nation to have people that are lawful permanent residents become citizens, so we would like to encourage that,” she said, speaking at a naturalization ceremony at the agency’s headquarters.
The record for naturalizations was in 2008, with more than a million people becoming US citizens, an uptick that was attributed to upcoming fee increases and efforts to encourage eligible applicants to apply for citizenship.