Civil Affairs at Diplomatic Office Keeps Increasing

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L.A.’s South Korean consulate office is continually dealing with increasing civil affairs.

According to the L.A. office, the total number of its civil affairs work in the first half of 2017 was 40,114, 11 percent higher than the same period last year. The number of applications for the consulate identification park, which undocumented Korean-Americans need to obtain drivers’ license California have also more than doubled to 861 from last year’s 349.

During the same period, the number of citizenship forfeitures also increased by 40 percent to 1,632. Issuing proof of entrance to the country also increased by 19 percent to 598.

Although the total workload has increased by 11 percent in just a year, the duration of waiting time per person has decreased to just 20 minutes from one to two hours. The civil service satisfaction is now at 88 percent.

Meanwhile, the amount of civil affairs work at all of South Korea’s diplomatic offices around the world have hit an all-time high this year.

The South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced Monday in a report to congress that its diplomatic offices has completed more than two million civil affairs cases since 2013.

South Korean citizens living abroad are increasingly visiting their nearby diplomatic offices to request for protection of themselves and their homes in case of an emergency or natural disaster as the diplomatic offices have completed 82,834 cases on that front last year, which marks an 82 percent increase. The number of applications for visa extensions, green card and citizenship applications also increased by 67 percent from 46,343 to 77,540.

By Hyoungjae Kim