A summary and a thank you…
A summary of what appears to be a breaking of the log jam we’ve seen for at least one of the US Consulates in Canada — Vancouver.
A thank you to one who took the time to listen — the Consul General of Canada, Sylvia D. Johnson.
Conversations took place. We’re seeing change. Communication works.
pacifica777 and calgary411 have had several discussions with Ms. Johnson — through email and a couple of lengthy phone calls, taking time from what we can only imagine to be her very busy schedule.
Earlier this month, Ms. Johnson asked in an email for my phone number and if I were available to talk with her. She listened to my personal concerns and then to what I said regarding reports of discrepancies of experiences at US Consulates in Canada for those who had made personal decisions for renunciation or relinquishment of US citizenship. Ms. Johnson assured me they knew of this issue and were taking steps to remedy the problems. Direction had gone to all Canadian Consulates to follow the same procedures, requiring one appointment for US renunciation or relinquishment vs two appointments. She asked me to give it until December to see if we were seeing a difference; if not, please contact her again. (During our phone call, I informed her of my November 14th renunciation, so had reservations whether or not I had compromised my own renunciation. As I’ve earlier commented, the appointments for myself and my husband at the Calgary US Consulate were straight-forward, efficient and non-judgemental.)
Today Isaac Brock received word from Cir regarding his communications with Ms. Johnson that resulted with her assistance to him in getting his required second appointment date (he’s one caught in between the old process and the new for Vancouver). Yesterday we had comments from Angela Kirk and DavidM re his wife — their final steps, having received the first, reported to us, CLNs resulting from their Vancouver appointments. Hopefully, the excessive amount of detail required for important supporting documentation in Vancouver will loosen as well.
A big difference! What were seemingly one after another bogged-down experiences for Vancouver relinquishers and renunciants now may have turned a corner. Numbers of those applying there are high and it seems the Vancouver Consulate seems swamped. We hope to soon see a continuing more efficient process there.
I want the renunciation appointment experiences that my husband, my daughter and I had at the Calgary US Consulate to be the same for all in Canada who decide the only way to get on with their lives is to take steps to either renounce US citizenship or to declare acts of relinquishment. To have their decisions respected and the process they go through respectful will be a win-win situation.
As editor of the Consulate Report Directory, I’ve been aware from procedural/scheduling/etc changes at various consulates in Canada, that they’ve been adapting, and positively so, to this unprecedented tidal wave of expatriations. And, despite their increased workload, I’ve sensed a serious commitment to providing good, even excellent, customer service almost everywhere. But, still, I was floored when Calgary411 told me she’d just gotten a phone call from the Consul General for all of Canada!
I have also spoken with Ms. Johnson. Ms. Johnson asked Calgary411 to put me in touch with her so that I could provide her with information about problems that have been experienced. And I too thank her for taking the time to listen.
While I was happy to be able to tell her that most of our consulate reports are excellent, she was interested in what we felt wasn’t going well. It was a very comfortable conversation. She pointed out changes that have recently been made, and are being made, to improve several things that have concerned us, and took a great interest in hearing of a couple of other matters we’ve encountered, with a view to addressing them as well.
From compiling the directory, it was obvious to me that various consuls have been implementing changes to deal more effectively with this overload of CLN applications. But it was absolutely terrific to realise that someone, the Consul General for Canada, no less, was very interested in our experiences and feedback!
I have been concerned about problems renunciants and relinquishers have had at certain consulates. After speaking with Ms. Johnson, I think we’re heading towards having expatriation go efficiently, smoothly, and respectfully for every CLN applicant at every consulate across Canada.
I agree with Calgary. That’s a win-win situation, for the person expatriating and for the US!