By Associated Press, The Washington Times

November 7, 2015

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – The public library in Hartford is being recognized for its efforts to help immigrants become U.S. citizens.

The Boston-based Project Citizenship nonprofit group has awarded the library a $16,000 grant to help cover the cost of free programs to counsel citizenship applicants and fight immigration services scams.

In 2010 the Hartford Public Library became the first in the country to receive funding from the U.S. Citizenship and Integration Services to expand citizenship opportunities. Library CEO Matthew Poland says it has become the de facto immigration and citizenship center in Hartford.

Poland says the award will help the library broaden its reach within the immigrant community to facilitate naturalization.

Project Citizenship is dedicated to helping legal permanent residents overcome barriers to becoming U.S. citizens.

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