Dominicans and nearly everyone applying for United States Visas should take note that from the month of July, the content of their social media page could now affect their application for legal access into the U.S.
That’s because the State Department is now requiring nearly all applicants for U.S. visas to submit their social media usernames, previous email addresses and phone numbers.
So this means even if someone deletes their account, the information is still relevant.
The US department is not only looking for terrorists but would use the facebook, instagram, twitter and other social media forums to scrutinize a person’s character.
According to media reports, it’s a vast expansion of the Trump administration’s enhanced screening of potential immigrants and visitors.
In a move that’s just taken effect after approval of the revised application forms, the department says it has updated its immigrant and non-immigrant visa forms to request the additional information, including “social media identifiers,” from almost all U.S. applicants.
The change, which was proposed in March 2018, is expected to affect about 15 million foreigners who apply for visas to enter the United States each year.
“National security is our top priority when adjudicating visa applications, and every prospective traveler and immigrant to the United States undergoes extensive security screening,” the department said. “We are constantly working to find mechanisms to improve our screening processes to protect U.S. citizens, while supporting legitimate travel to the United States.”
Social media, email and phone number histories had only been sought in the past from applicants who were identified for extra scrutiny, such as people who had traveled to areas controlled by terrorist organizations. An estimated 65,000 applicants per year had fallen into that category.
The department says collecting the additional information from more applicants “will strengthen our process for vetting these applicants and confirming their identity.”
The new rules apply to virtually all applicants for immigrant and non-immigrant visas. When it filed its initial notice to make the change, the department estimated it would affect 710,000 immigrant visa applicants and 14 million non-immigrant visa applicants, including those who want to come to the U.S. for business or education.
The new visa application forms list a number of social media platforms and require the applicant to provide any account names they may have had on them over the previous five years. They also give applicants the option to volunteer information about social media accounts on platforms not listed on the form.
In addition to their social media histories, visa applicants are now asked for five years of previously used telephone numbers, email addresses, international travel and deportation status, as well as whether any family members have been involved in terrorist activities.
Only applicants for certain diplomatic and official visa types are exempted from the requirements.
The Diocese of Roseau celebrates the solemnity of Christ the King on Sunday November 24th at the Windsor park sports stadium.
All the faithful should be at the Bay Front for 8.30am to begin the procession at 9.00am. The Eucharistic celebration begins at 10:00 am.
On that day the diocese will also launch the AEC Youth assembly to be held in Dominica in 2021, present awards to various individuals and stage a youth extravaganza. Please contact your various parishes for further information.
Dominica national football team stuns critics; defeats St. Vincent & the Grenadines
2 hours ago
November 19, 2019
The Dominica national football team defied all odds, stunned its critics and shattered the hopes of St. Vincent & the Grenadines in their quest for a Gold Cup spot.
Before this, their final game at home, Dominica had been beaten at home and away to Suriname, Nicaragua and also to St. Vincent.
Needing a draw or a win to ensure that they advanced to the Gold Cup, St. Vincent found a Dominica team fully energized before a crowd of 400 hundred cheering on the home team.
However, Julian wade failed to find the back of the net on several occasions despite getting many easy chances.
The first half ended goal-less and as usual, many Dominicans expected the team to go down yet again. The second half saw a rejuvenated St. Vincent team fighting to get that goal and tempers at times flared causing referee Ricangel De Leca from Aruba to issue a few yellow cards.
Dominica then brought in the young Audel Laville in the 68th minute for Travist Joseph and almost immediately, things changed. A combination of Julian Wade on the left side of the field of play together with Donan Jervier and Sidney Lockhart gave Laville his first touch of the ball in the 71st minute and his right-footed blast rocketed at the back of the net giving the Vincentian goalkeeper Dwaine Sandy no chance. The crowd went wild – Dominica 1, St. Vincent nil. It was also the first goal for Laville in the tournament and he became the youngest player to score in that competition.
St. Vincent made a few changes and dug deep looking for that equalizer and or the winning goal but Dominica held firm in defense until the final whistle came, winning 1 goal to nil.
The DAIC as a private sector organization would like to caution all citizens and political parties and supporters to observe the tenets of peaceful exercise of their electoral franchise in the lead up to, and into the general election.
We have worked hard to survive and bounce back from the traumas of two destructive weather events which had significant adverse effects to individuals and business owners alike and we must remember the human catastrophe associated with the fallout of Hurricane Maria and the losses suffered. Our country has bounced back to regain a sense of normality because of the diligence and togetherness of the people of Dominica. Let us make every effort to ensure that this is preserved.
Any sequence of events which can and will compromise law and order in our country and which will create further shocks to the business community, and confidence in our country, will compromise jobs for locals and our economy and must be condemned. These events can and will also compromise investor confidence and will cause us quite easily to step back to the dark days of the immediate post-Hurricane Maria catastrophe.
Equally, we urge that the security forces be guided by an even-handed approach to law enforcement. This means observing the preservation of peace and the protection of the citizenry, private and public property coupled with freedom of movement whilst respecting the rights of individuals to express themselves as is customary in a democracy.
This marriage between responsible advocacy and responsible leadership is vital in order for this country to continue moving forward peacefully and to ensure that the private sector stays confident through the electoral process.
We also urge that responsibility be exercised in the circulation of imagery (both nationally and internationally) which purports scenes that may misrepresent the total view of current life in Dominica. We should all be mindful at all times of the power of instant media and the impressions it may give of the island, again compromising the livelihood of businesses large and small and eroding the confidence of the outside world in the entire country.
We must ensure that our actions today do not negatively affect our lives and livelihoods after this electoral period is over and that respect for law and order is paramount and essential at this time.