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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: May 24, 2021 02:38 PM
From: Representative MaryLouise Isaacson
To: All House members
Subject: Urging Congress to Address Statelessness
A person’s nationality is usually determined at birth, based either on the nationality of their parents or the country they were born in. People who are stateless, however, do not hold citizenship in any country. Some have been born stateless or have become stateless later in life due to lack of birth registration, administrative oversight, political change, restrictive laws regarding citizenship, or a variety of other causes. Today, millions of people around the world are considered to be stateless. As a result, they not only lack a sense of identity and belonging, but they also lack legal protection and are unable to exercise a wide range of fundamental rights.
Although there is an estimate of more than 200,000 stateless people living in America, the United States does not provide stateless people with any type of benefit or status under federal law. Stateless people are typically hard-working, contributing members of their communities, but due to their lack of citizenship or status, they are constantly battling a multitude of hardships. They cannot receive an education, obtain employment, see a doctor, open a bank account, buy a house, or get married.
The stateless people in the United States need Congress to act now. That is why I am introducing a resolution that urges Congress to address statelessness by accepting and acknowledging the international customary definition of stateless persons and adopting legislation to protect stateless persons on United States territory and provide them the right to adjust status as well as a path to citizenship. It is important to create awareness surrounding statelessness, as it is the first step to preventing and mitigating such a large problem. Please join me in showing the stateless people of our nation that we support them and their rights.

Introduced as HR112