According to Immigration Equality, more than 36,000 same-sex couples include a partner who is a non-citizen. And, at long last, at least a few members of Congress are stepping up to the plate to try and make life a little easier for them. In September, 4 more Senators and 18 Representatives signed on to co-sponsor the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA), a legislative proposal to finally level the playing field for lesbian and gay couples when it comes to U.S. immigration policy.
For many bi-national couples, our country's immigration law means more than a long-distance relationship. In many cases, it means keeping families with children apart. In others, it means forcing American citizens to make an untenable choice between the country they call home and the person they love. UAFA, which is now supported by 18 Senators and 118 lawmakers in the House, would end those difficult decisions and bring families together. It's a simple, common-sense solution that would make a world of difference to bi-national couples.
As Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) recently said, "U.S. immigration law should not force Americans to leave their country and community behind in order to keep their family intact."
Under current immigration law, Americans cannot sponsor their same-sex partners for legal status in the United States. Though 16 other countries have modified their immigration laws to allow such sponsorships, the U.S. continues to deny that right to lesbian and gay couples, forcing yet another discriminatory law onto same-sex families.
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