Immigration bill to unite gay binational couples with path to citizenship

lgbt, politics Add comments (8)

Congressman Jerrold Nadler of NY will introduce the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA) tomorrow February 12 which would allow gay Americans to sponsor their foreign-born partners and provide a legal path to U.S. citizenship.

Originally introduced in 2007, the 2009 version of the bill is essentially unchanged and has a growing list of 43 original cosponsors. You can help add to the list of cosponsors before and after the bill’s introduction by doing the following:

  • Find out who your U.S. House Representative is. Go to, enter your address, and you will be provided the name of your U.S. Representative.
  • Call the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202)224-3121 and ask to be connected to your U.S. Representative.
  • Tell your representative’s staff:

I am calling to ask Representative ________________ to be an original cosponsor of the Uniting American Families Act of 2009. To cosponsor, he/she must contact Rep. Jerrold Nadler who is the lead sponsor.

The U.S. government discriminates against gay and lesbian binational couples by not allowing us to sponsor our foreign-born life partners for immigration. Because of this, we face the terrible choice of separating from the person we love or leaving our country. As Americans, we should not have to choose between family and country. Please ask Rep. _________________ to cosponsor the Uniting American Families Act of 2009.

While not a cosponsor of the 2006 bill, former senator and now President Obama wrote in an open letter to the LGBT community in early 2008 that he worked to improve the Uniting American Families Act, “so we can afford same-sex couples the same rights and obligations as married couples in our immigration system.”

Rahm Emanuel former Congressman from Illinois and now President Obama’s Chief of Staff was also a cosponsor of UAFA bill.

On a more personal level this issue is of tremendous importance to me. Many of my closest friends live with the threat of forced separation every day, knowing that each day could be their last together. And considering my personal background and history, it is a situation that I could easily find myself in. So it’s hard to remain optimistic and hopeful as friend after friend says goodbye…

But the significance of the introduction of this immigration bill on February 12, on Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, shouldn’t be lost on any of us. Like Lincoln before him, Obama must heal a nation that is divided, with the promise of expanding freedom and opportunity to all Americans, regardless of race… regardless of gender… regardless or sexual orientation. The echo’s of Lincoln we see in Obama, give me pause, and give me hope. It makes Lincoln’s words especially relevant now as we hunger for change…

“Fellow-citizens, we cannot escape history. We of this Congress and this administration, will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance, or insignificance, can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass, will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation. We say we are for the Union. The world will not forget that we say this. We know how to save the Union. The world knows we do know how to save it. We — even we here — hold the power, and bear the responsibility. In giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free — honorable alike in what we give, and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth. Other means may succeed; this could not fail. The way is plain, peaceful, generous, just — a way which, if followed, the world will forever applaud, and God must forever bless.”

For additional information and resources vist

Immigration Equality


Post by ILO on 02/11/09 at 11:50 am