We know the holidays can be difficult for many binational couples – forced to live in exile away from family members, separated from one another for months at a time, uncertainty about the future.
2011 will be remembered as a rollercoaster year for same-sex couples in binational relationships. With President Obama’s declaration and decision back in February that federal courts stop defending DOMA, tens of thousands of same-sex binational couples believed relief was finally in sight after many years of discriminatory immigration laws. Additionally, a number of recent court decisions have stayed or dropped deportation proceedings of gay and lesbian immigrants legally married to Americans.
We were further encouraged when the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency issued a statement in June granting agents guidelines for prioritizing deportations. The Morton Memo, as the statement was called, made partners in binational relationships a low priority.
However, additional ICE guidelines issued in November fail to specifically mention gay and lesbian binational couples, and while Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made an impassioned plea to the international community this month to recognize the full human rights of LGBT people worldwide, same-sex binational couples are still separated, unable to sponsor their partners and forced to make choices between their families and their country.
Why Donate to Out4Immigration?
We are an all-volunteer, grassroots organization – and we rely on your kind donations throughout the year to help us stand with our allies GetEQUAL and Stop the Deportations at rallies for couples like for couples like Henry & Josh and Alex & Doug. We march in parades, attend conferences and speak at community events. Every time we make contact with someone, we share our printed materials like our stickers and fact sheets to let people know who we are, the challenges we are facing and what needs to change so that all loving and committed couples have the same rights and opportunities to live their lives together.