Wednesday, 30 September, 2020

Blind man fails citizenship test after being denied Braille



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CBS

Image caption

Lucio Delgado was born blind and uses a cane to get around

A blind man has been denied US citizenship after immigration agents refused to provide him with an English language sentence to read in Braille.

Lucio Delgado, 23, was born blind and uses a cane to get around. He moved to the US from Mexico six years ago.

Mr Delgado said he was offered a large-print sentence to read, which he could not, being totally blind.

Mr Delgado, who is legally blind under Illinois state law, was told to get a doctor’s note to prove his condition.

“Over here I was going to get the education I couldn’t get in Mexico,” he told CBS News from his home on a farm in Pembroke Township, Illinois – about 70 miles (110km) south of Chicago.

After taking the test in May, he recently received a letter from US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) informing him that he had been rejected.

“Unfortunately, you were unable to read a sentence in the English language,” the letter said. “Regrettably, you were unable to achieve a passing score on the reading portion of the naturalisation test.”

“I really wasn’t expecting not to be provided that very basic accommodation,” he told the Washington Post newspaper. “It was quite a shocker, honestly.”

“I was going to be someone. I was going to make my family here and there proud,” he told CBS.

He was told during the test to go and get a doctor’s note to prove that he was blind, but he could not afford to do so because he does not have health insurance.

A spokesman for the USCIS told the Post that they began offering Braille tests in November, months after Mr Delgado sat for his exam.

A lawyer for Mr Delgado said the USCIS had contacted him since his story was first reported last week to offer him another appointment later this month.


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