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Opinion

Thanksgiving message

IMMIGRATION CORNER - Michael J. Gurfinkel - The Philippine Star

Thanksgiving is being celebrated differently this year. Thankfully, we are nearing the end of the pandemic and may finally have a gathering of loved ones while adhering to COVID protocols.

We are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel in all areas of our lives, including immigration, and I hope we can finally get back to “normal.” The pandemic created such turmoil, frustration, delays and hardship for so many in connection with their immigration matters.  Embassies and USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services) offices were closed, no interviews were being conducted, there were travel bans, immigration bans and lockdowns.

Thankfully, embassies are slowly reopening, visa interviews are being scheduled and visas are again being issued, allowing families to be reunited in the US. USCIS offices are also reopening and scheduling interviews.  Therefore, we do have a lot to be thankful for, compared to how the situation was the previous two years.

In the coming year, I hope the pandemic will further subside, immigration backlogs will be reduced and we can all get back to our normal lives. I also hope Congress can stop all its bickering and infighting and get together and come up with comprehensive immigration reform, as both parties have continuously promised but have yet to deliver, including a possible amnesty for the approximate 11 million undocumented immigrants in the US.

My personal Thanksgiving wish is to be able to assist eligible applicants in achieving legalization and their American dream, enabling them to be reunited to celebrate with their families in America.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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WEBSITE: www.gurfinkel.com

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