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Interested in a job in Los Angeles County? Citizenship not required – San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Citizenship will no longer be a requirement to land a job in Los Angeles County, with some exceptions.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously without discussion this week to allow the county to hire non-citizens except in positions for which being a U.S. citizen is required by state law and /or federal.

Being a U.S. citizen will remain a requirement for any candidate for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department or any peace officer hired by the county.

The motion passed by the board says the policy “ensures that applicants for employment are given fair and equitable consideration, without regard to national origin, citizenship or other non-merit factors that are not not substantially related to the successful performance of the duties of the position”.

On June 22, 2021, the Board of Supervisors asked the County Board Office and the Department of Human Resources to determine whether it was legal to waive any citizenship requirements for county officers or department heads appointed by the advice.

Staff said the board can waive citizenship requirements for its staff unless federal or state law explicitly imposes a requirement.

“Removing a barrier, such as the citizenship requirement, as permitted by law, allows residents of our county to be served by people who are like them and can linguistically and culturally understand their individual needs,” wrote First District Supervisor Hilda Solis, the mover, in an email response Thursday, July 28.

As of 2018, approximately 880,000 non-citizens made LA County their home. Solis, in a statement prepared in 2021, said citizenship presents “barriers to employment in the county” for qualified non-citizen applicants.

Around this time, Solis used the example of trying to fill entry-level assistant public defender positions. Solis cited the LA Office of the Public Defender, which has received applications from otherwise qualified non-US citizens who, although licensed to practice law in California, have been disqualified from applying for public defender jobs.

The new policy is in the county’s best interest, the council’s motion said, “reducing barriers to employment and expanding the pool of applicants.”

The motion also says removing the citizenship requirement will help bring in workers who may have multiple language skills, “connecting with vulnerable communities and making new connections to essential services.”

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