There are a variety of sites, advertisements and even misleading information about the resources available to a new immigrant in the United States of America. Some of them promise your skies and stars, while others cut and paste from the official website of USA Homeland Security.
Whenever in doubt, always go to the source of the information. The purpose of this article is not to spoon-feed you the guidelines and rules, but share the source of such information.
There is a comprehensive guide issued by the U.S. Government as an official publication. The guide is titled ‘Welcome to the United States: A Guide for New Immigrants, Washington, DC, Revised Edition’ and the information come straight from the horse’s mouth: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Citizenship, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, .
This guide is a welcome document for new immigrants or for those who plan to migrate to USA in the near future. “Adjusting to your new life in the United States of America will take time. This guide contains basic information that will help you settle in the United States and find what you and your family need for everyday life. It also summarizes important information about your legal status and about agencies and organizations that provide documents or essential services you may need.”
The information range from a variety of topics: where to get help, how to get help, information on job search, where to get legal help, necessary contact information for immigration services and so on. The guide rightfully goes on to summarize ‘Your Rights and Responsibilities as a Permanent Resident’, including ‘Consequences of Criminal Behavior for Permanent Residents.’ Just so you know, you have been warned. :)!
Finding a place to live, buying a house, getting a social security number, taking care of your money…are all addressed briefly, each section providing a link to useful resources. Oh, and ‘Paying Taxes’ is also explained; Uncle Sam is reminding you of paying back to the country, in return for the resources and services!
The guide touches on the topics of health care and health insurance, including information on low-cost healthcare. “The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services also provides basic healthcare to immigrants. They have a website that lists clinics and other healthcare choices. To find a clinic or doctor near you…” There are links to such information.
Education and Childcare has its own section of useful resources and the links The ‘Emergency and Safety’ section has useful information on emergencies services as well as ‘When Not to Call 911’. After all, you don’t want a fire truck and an ambulance at your door for a minor problem.
And then, there is a complete section on ‘Learning About the United States’ that summarizes the American democracy, very brief history of America, the flag, how the government is run and so on….
And finally, once you are all settles in the new country, there is a complete section on ‘Becoming a U.S. Citizen!’
The 114 pages document, in PDF format, can be obtained from the official website of ‘US Citizenship and Immigration Services’, and is titled: Welcome to the United States, A Guide for New Immigrants.
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