DENVER, CO - APRIL 03: The Dab cultivation manager Oswaldo Barrientos, who immigrated to the United States when he was a year old, stands for a portrait in a marijuana grow room he oversees Wednesday, April 3, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. Barrientos' application for U.S. citizenship was recently denied, his attorney alleges, because he works in facility with marijuana. (Photo by Michael Ciaglo/Special to the Denver Post)

Denver mayor says legal immigrants are being denied citizenship due to work in marijuana industry

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock and City Attorney Kristin Bronson say legal immigrants in Denver are being denied the opportunity to become naturalized citizens because they work in the cannabis industry.

In a letter Wednesday to U.S. Attorney General William Barr, Hancock said he met with two immigrants this week, one from El Salvador and another from Lithuania, who have lived in Colorado for two decades.

“They have graduated from our schools,” the mayor wrote. “They have paid their taxes. They are working to achieve the American dream and complying with the processes in place to become a part of our great society, but were denied naturalization solely because of their cannabis industry employment.”

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