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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Congressional Record: November 12, 2003 (Senate)]
[Page S14481-S14494]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:cr12no03-37]                         



 
  NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2004--CONFERENCE 
                            REPORT--Resumed

		[ ... ] 						
						
							
Mr. KENNEDY. The Defense authorization bill contains many provisions 
that provide essential support for our military personnel, especially 
when we are asking so much from them in Iraq and around the world.

		[ ... ]

  
  The legislation also eases the path to citizenship for immigrants who 
serve in our Armed Forces and provides immigration benefits to 
surviving family members of those killed in service. 37,000 men and 
women in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard have the 
immigration status of permanent residents serving in our Armed Forces. 
Another 12,000 permanent residents are in the Reserves and the National 
Guard.
  The legislation also improves access to naturalization for lawful 
permanent residents serving in the military. It provides expedited 
naturalization for members of the Selected Reserves during military 
conflicts. It protects spouses, children, and parents of soldiers 
killed in action, by preserving their ability to file for permanent 
residence in the United States.
  Over a dozen immigrant soldiers have been killed in Iraq and these 
benefits are well deserved. These immigration provisions in the bill 
are a tribute to the sacrifices that these future Americans are already 
making for their adopted country. They deserve recognition for their 
bravery and loyalty to the basic ideals and freedoms of our 
country. Unfortunately, although the bill provides many needed benefits 
for our men and women in uniform, it lets down their civilian 
counterparts.

		[ ... ] 
	
		[ End] 


						



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