Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Clear benchmarks on Sudan

The State Department has not publicly disclosed the precise benchmarks it is applying to assess progress in Sudan. The outcome of the first quarterly review of the U.S. Sudan policy by the National Security Council Deputies Committee was undisclosed. In Sudan, tensions are high with the April national elections and January 2011 referendum on independence for southern Sudan rapidly approaching. I strongly encourage the ...more »

Submitted by (@susan0)

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82 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

The Department of State should live webcast all meetings

The Department of State should live webcast all meetings for proposed rule making and regulations where the public comment should take place. They should make these meetings available for on demand viewing and have the ability to have that content be indexed for video search. By doing this the public and stakeholders will be able to see the inner workings of the rule making process and make the content and proceedings ...more »

Submitted by (@jaorangemen)

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25 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Family-Based Visa Interviews, Denials, Need for Uniform Policies

Echoing bby_horne and Stephen's comments, there are currently too many discrepancies between individual embassies and consulates and how they go about issuing Family-Based Visas (K-1, K-3, CR-1, etc). More training and stricter control by the DoS would go a long way in making sure that individual consulates and individual consular officers are not overstepping bounds, conducting visa interviews with fairness, and behaving ...more »

Submitted by (@ash000)

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24 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Family Visa Denials; K-1,K-3,CR-1, IR-1

Refusals of Family Based visas causes undue suffering and pain. Visa refusals can take months or years to overcome. The time of separation is agonizing for the family, and the stress of visa refusals can tear families apart. Consular officers often deny family based visas for the reason of "lack of a bonifide relationship." The consular officers make these refusals without a factual basis. Instead they base their reasons ...more »

Submitted by (@stephen)

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22 votes
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New Ways of Doing Business, New Tools...

Advance Open Diplomacy in Parallel with Open Government

The U.S. Government should invest significant resources to advance the concept of open diplomacy. This new construct would rely heavily upon the U.S. Government’s existing e-diplomacy and public diplomacy tradition. However, it would not be limited to these disciplines. Open diplomacy would serve as the overall diplomatic strategy for the country - placing new emphasis on: 1) increasing transparency, promoting openness, ...more »

Submitted by (@michaelwalsh)

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11 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Passport process tracking

It would be helpful for the State Department to setup a process tracking website for the passport process. Something similar to how FedEx/UPS/USPS allow you to track packages and get email updates about their status. E.g. that application for renewal has been received, new passport has been send, etc. This is particularly important for US citzens living overseas who may need to use their passport on a regular basis and ...more »

Submitted by (@erik.streed)

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18 votes
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New Ways of Doing Business, New Tools...

OpenState v2.0: A Next Gen Opensource/Opensocial Portal

A pilot project to build a next-gen State Department portal for the Federal Community Cloud. The idea is to build a suite of opensocial portals, one at each Federal Agency, based on The Open Stack that will enable communication with all opensocial partners.

 

Useful Links:

http://tinyurl.com/yks78pg

http://bit.ly/cUrTv8

Submitted by (@megan.eskey)

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8 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

221g Administrative processing timeline

Also with 221g Administrative processing, there should be a deadline on when it would be completed. I have read a lot of forums that some people have been waiting for years to get a response. Others are still waiting. During this long waiting period, the petitioner and beneficiary go thru pain and suffering, and the frustration that the US government is not doing enough for them. It is also frustrating to call USCIS and ...more »

Submitted by

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8 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Ombudsman for Consular Affairs

The State Department needs an Office of Ombudsman for Consular Affairs. An Office of Ombudsman will provide a venue for citizens to express ideas for improvement, and to complain when the Office of Consular Affairs is failing in its mission. Changes, recommendations, and complaints could be made about the many areas of responsibility for Consular Affairs such as visa issuance, passports, U. S. Citizens services, etc. ...more »

Submitted by (@stephen)

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14 votes
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Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Fix ITAR

Fix ITAR. Small companies are being handicapped by having to devote extraordinary amounts of time and money to comply with ITAR policies. Talk to commercial space companies (and other impacted industries) about their experiences, determine what's broken and how to better the situation, and then actually fix it. Find the middle ground where certain information is kept from those that do not need to acquire it but small ...more »

Submitted by (@colinake)

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13 votes
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Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Visa Interview Policies..

In regards to Visas for Spouse or Fiance/Fiancee, It would not cost our government $1 more to do the Visa Interview in a Professional and Fair manner. There is very little information as to the "Real/Actual Requirements" on Visa Interview Policies, only the VAGUE guidelines, that a Visa Interview Officer may or may not use. Obtaining a Visa SOLELY rest with the Visa Interview Officer's DISCRETION, which means, "ability ...more »

Submitted by (@bbbyhorne)

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12 votes
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Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Process PRM used for increasing funding for refugee resettlement

The State Department's PRM recently went ahead, in the middle of this worst recession on record, and doubled resettlement and placement (R&P) per capita funding to the private refugee resettlement agencies. A PRM official said that the increase was done based on new funding that was available as well as on a cost-analysis study (The Real Cost of Welcome) done by one of the non-profit recipients of the increase - Lutheran ...more »

Submitted by (@christophercoen)

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4 votes
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