As a response to the coronavirus outbreak, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services announced that it would temporarily suspend all in-person services, as well as the interviews and naturalization ceremonies.
According to the agency, the decision will take effect on March 18, 2020, until April 1, 2020, and will include asylum offices and Application Support Centers, Visa Guide.World reports.
Emergency services will be provided in the meantime, the USCIS pointed out.
All the services that do not require direct contact with the public will continue.
“USCIS field offices will send notices to applicants and petitioners with scheduled appointments and naturalization ceremonies impacted by this closure. USCIS asylum offices will send interview cancellation notices and automatically reschedule asylum interviews,” the agency’s statement reads.
USCIS explained that all the rescheduled applicants would receive a new notice with the details of the interview, such as new time, date and location.
The US government’s further plans are to prohibit asylum seekers from both southern and northern borders to enter the US due to the deadly virus.
Even though the decision towards coronavirus outbreak had been ad hoc, some offices across the country reminded opened, while some others were closed, members of the AFGE National CIS Council 119 highlighted.
In San Francisco, all offices are closed to the public, according to the public health order requiring most citizens to remain in place.
Kenneth Palinkas, executive vice president of the council, said that if the US wants to stop the virus from spreading, everybody needs to participate.
Due to the coronavirus spread, the US embassies worldwide will suspend their visa services in countries where the COVID-19 is highly spread.
The US Embassy and Consulates in Mexico announced that starting from today, (March 18, 2020) all the immigrant and non-immigrant visa services will be temporarily suspended, until further notice.
Even though the visa services have been restricted all over the US, the initial period for H-1B visa Cap remains open until March 20, for the 2021 fiscal year.
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