Uniting American Families Act reintroduced in U.S. House

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, a longtime advocate for fair and humane comprehensive immigration reform, joined others in standing with members of Congress at a Capitol Hill press conference today announcing the House reintroduction of the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA), which would end discrimination against binational same-sex couples and their families. The bill was reintroduced by U.S. Reps Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution; Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration; and Reps. John Conyers (D-Mich.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Jared Polis (D-Colo.), Mike Honda (D-Calif.), Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) and Jackie Speier (D-Calif.). It is being reintroduced in the Senate by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.).

Task Force Executive Director Rea Carey says:

U.S. immigration policy is supposed to be based on the principle of bringing and keeping families together, but the system is broken. Instead of unification, the policy often results in painful separation of loved ones. This must change. The U.S. has roughly 12 million undocumented immigrants, including at least half a million lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Thousands of binational same-sex couples and their families have been kept separated or forced to live abroad. This discriminatory practice is unfair and inhumane. No one should ever have to choose between their partner and their country or be denied the freedom to be with their families. UAFA is consistent with U.S. immigration law’s existing policy of keeping families intact. We thank the members of Congress standing for equality today and for supporting the inclusion of LGBT families in all future comprehensive immigration reform efforts.

Earlier today, several organizations and members of Congress issued this joint statement.