France grants citizenship to 12,000 people fighting Covid-19

France has naturalized more than 12,000 frontline workers against Covid-19 in recognition of their contributions to public health.

“Those who work on the front lines have responded to the call of the country, so it is right for the country to extend its hand to them. It is thanks to them that our country has overcome the pandemic,” said the French Minister of Nationality. Marlene Schiappa said on September 9 when she announced the grant of citizenship to more than 12,000 frontline workers against the epidemic.

In addition to speeding up the citizenship application process, which normally takes two years, the French government is also proposing to reduce the residency requirement from five years to two years for frontline workers.

“Welcome to our new compatriots with French citizenship and thank you on behalf of the republic. This country is grateful to you all,” said Minister Schiappa.

Marlene Schiappa speaks during a meeting in Paris, France, in November 2018.  Photo: Reuters.

Marlene Schiappa speaks during a meeting in Paris, France, in November 2018. Photo: Reuters.

The French Interior Ministry in September 2020 invited those who “actively contributed” to the fight against Covid-19 to quickly apply for naturalization. According to Minister Schiappa, 16,381 people have applied and 12,012 people have been approved.

Those on the front lines of the fight against Covid-19 who have been granted French citizenship include medical professionals, security officers, environmental workers, and those who care for the children of essential workers.

In April 2020, hospital and nursing home workers in France were granted a tax exemption of 1,000-1,500 euros (about 1,100-1,700 USD) as a thank you gift from the government for their contribution in the fight against Covid. -19.

France is the sixth largest epidemic area in the world with more than 6.8 million infections and more than 115,000 deaths from nCoV.

Ngoc Anh (Follow Guardian)

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