Saturday, September 29, 2012

A step forward: same-sex couples are 'family' for immigration purposes

My immigration story was difficult, stressful, and expensive. Which is the understated English way of saying, Nightmarish, terrifying, and financially crippling. Kelley and I went through five years of hell, literally not knowing where in the world we would live from month to month. The experience marked me deeply. I didn't stop having bad dreams until recently. I can't tell you how much I want others in my situation to be free of that.

The current administration has been taking tiny steps forward for a couple of years. First of all they relegated deportation of same-sex partners to 'low priority'. (And isn't it sad that this was a step forward...) Then they announced that unofficially same-sex partners would be treated as family. But yesterday they took a big stride: Janet Napolitano told Nancy Pelosi she has provided written guidelines to field officers "that the interpretation of the phrase 'family relationships' includes long-term, same-sex partners." (Read more about it in The Advocate.)

I'm delighted. I'll be even happier when DOMA is removed from the statute books, when same-sex marriage obtains at the federal level, and none of us have to go through this shit anymore.

Yes, I'll talk more about this next week. For now: yay! It's a lovely way to begin my birthday tomorrow.

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