How do people with different migrant backgrounds interpret and enact political participation in restrictive institutional contexts? To address this question, this policy brief looks to Italy, where the acquisition of citizenship is a highly demanding process. Further, the right to vote in any election is restricted to Italian citizens. This brief explores how citizenship (or lack thereof), belonging, and political participation interact, revealing how migrants actively participate in the community. It finds that migrants both adapt to and rework institutional structures in order to enact political and social change.