In Celebration of World Refugee Day, 15 Refugees to Become U.S. Citizens on Friday, June 19

For Immediate Release
June 18, 2015

John Harrell
Northeast Fla. Region Communications Director
(904) 233-7792

In Celebration of World Refugee Day, 15 Refugees to Become U.S. Citizens on Friday, June 19
Naturalization Ceremony In Jacksonville To Celebrate World Refugee Day

JACKSONVILLE-  Several refugees and asylees who were fleeing persecution in their own countries even though they had not committed any crimes and who were penalized for their political views will become U.S. citizens in a special ceremony to celebrate World Refugee Day in Jacksonville.  These former refugees, who have been living in the Jacksonville area, will proudly take the Oath of Allegiance to become citizens of the United States.

The citizenship ceremony is part of a special World Refugee Day event to honor the courage and resilience of refugees. More than 32,000 refugees are re-settled in Florida each year, including 1,110 refugees in Jacksonville.  The majority of these refugees who arrived in Jacksonville in the past year came from Cuba, Burma and Iraq.

The Department of Children & Families’ Refugee Services program is funded by the federal government to coordinate and oversee many of the services provided to refugees who settle in Florida. These services, including employment, adult education, employment-related immigration services, and youth services, have served more than 150,000 refugees in Florida during the past five years. For more information on refugee services, visit:

WHO: Florida Department of Children and Families, including Taddese Fessehaye with Refugee Services.  Local refugees.

WHAT: World Refugee Day event with Naturalization Ceremony

WHEN: Friday, June 19, 11 a.m.

WHERE: Jacksonville Public Library, Main Library, Conference Level, 303 North Laura Street, Downtown Jacksonville.

Note: Current and former refugees will be available to speak with the media to share their story.

Contact: John Harrell, DCF Northeast Florida Region Communications Director, (904) 233-7792