Citizenship NOW! Call-In
CUNY and the New York Daily News help you with your immigration questions!
Since 2004, the annual CUNY/ Daily News Citizenship NOW! Call-In has provided over 135,000 callers with free, confidential information on immigration issues ranging from U.S. citizenship to residency to family petitions. Hundreds of volunteers participate in this event each year, many of them trained by CUNY Citizenship Now!
The event is widely supported by some of New York’s most influential elected officials. United States Senators Chuck Schumer and Kristen Gillibrand, current Mayor Bill de Blasio and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg have all visited in past years to offer words of encouragement.
The call-in was a vision shared by Jay Hershenson, Senior Vice Chancellor for University Relations for the City University of New York (CUNY) and the Martin Dunn, former Editor-In-Chief of the New York Daily News. Together, they approached immigration attorney and Daily News columnist Allan Wernick to organize the event.
For one week each spring, we open the phones from 9am to 7pm to answer calls from anyone seeking immigration information or resources. In 2014, around 300 volunteers assisted 12,738 callers in 45 different languages.
Call-in volunteers include immigration attorneys, paralegals, advocates, and others who share a passion for immigration issues.
Year after year, the dedication of our volunteers has helped make the call-in so successful. Many of these volunteers are also members of the CUNY/NYC Citizenship Now! Volunteer Corps and participate in our community-based naturalization application assistance events throughout the year.
Prior to each year’s call-in, we run a full-day training session for all participants. The training covers the basics of immigration law and familiarizes volunteers with the publications and resources available to them during the week.
The call-in has generated support from the New York business community. Tech sponsors have included Presidio and Cisco. Univision and WABC-TV, our media partners, have been instrumental in building support within the community.