The Uniting American Families Act (UAFA -H.R. 1024/S. 424) was introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives as a Valentine’s Day gift this year to same-sex, binational couples by Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont. Both versions of the bill have not yet moved, and action is needed.
Currently, the U.S. government does not allow gays and lesbians to sponsor their foreign-born partners for immigration. Because of this, many couples face the terrible choice of separating from the person they love or leaving our country.
The UAFA would fulfill the pledge of family unification under current U.S. immigration policy by allowing gay and lesbian Americans to sponsor their partners for immigration to the United States.
The Washington Post and The San Francisco Chronicle have both recently
endorsed passage of the UAFA, and the American Bar Association has also just recently adopted a resolution endorsing the UAFA.
This is not a problem that is fixed by civil unions or even same-sex marriage arriving in Iowa, Vermont or any other state. Tens of thousands of bi-national same-sex couples continue to be discriminated against despite changing marriage laws. The UAFA would allow couples to sponsor their foreign partners for immigration, a right that straight married couples in the U.S. enjoy, along with same-sex couples in 19 other nations around the world.
In Michigan, Rep. John Conyers (D-Detroit) and Rep. Sander Levin (D-Roseville) have already signed on to co-sponsor the legislation. Supporters of the bill are currently being urged to contact their members of Congress urging support of the UAFA.