U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is updating guidance in its policy manual to further clarify voter registration access at their administrative naturalization ceremonies.
In the updated guidance, USCIS states that, effective immediately:
- Access to voter registration services will be provided at each administrative naturalization ceremony, including information regarding points-of-contact for voting and voter registration.
- Requests will be made of election officials from state and/or local government election offices to attend ceremonies as well as distribute, collect, and review voter registration applications, and officially register new citizens.
- USCIS offices will coordinate with non-partisan, non-governmental organizations for voter registration services whenever state or local government election officials are not available.
- Governmental or non-governmental organizations offering on-site voter registration services will receive opportunities to introduce themselves and address naturalization candidates before ceremonies.
For consistency and efficiency, USCIS also created the Form N-401, Voter Registration Services Attestation, for non-governmental agencies to submit one-time requests per field office to participate in these ceremonies.
This update is part of a broader push by the Biden administration to increase voter registration and expand access to voter registration for new U.S. citizens by promoting and encouraging the exercise of the franchise, and removing potential agency obstacles that may otherwise serve as a deterrent to these efforts.