It’s 2012 and in America today, there is no way that a U.S. citizen can sponsor a same-sex partner for immigration on the basis of that relationship. I know it because I live it!
One group working to change this situation is Out4Immigration.
This volunteers-only grassroots group is dedicated to information and empowerment for LGBT immigrants, their partners, families and friends. I found out about Out4Immigration several years ago and support them as I can. They receive a portion of the proceeds from the sales of my book, Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, Findhorn Press, 2011, and I make donations as I can. In fact, I got permission to use O4I’s tagline, United by Love, Divided by Law as part of my book’s title.
Out4Immigration says, in its brochure, that it is a non-profit, volunteer-run grassroots organization that addresses the widespread discriminatory impact of U.S. immigration laws on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and HIV+ people and their families through education, outreach, advocacy and support.
Karin and I have met some wonderful folks through Out4Immigration and have been involved with as many actions and activities as we can.
The goal for O4I is this: equal application of United States immigration laws toward LGBT U.S. citizens.
To make this happen, O4I offers support and networking opportunities; sponsors free legal clinics organized by NCLR, National Center for Lesbian Rights; provides advocacy and outreach for U.S. citizens and their foreign partners in same-sex binational relationships; asylum-seekers based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and HIV+ immigrants; forms action committees to support their mission; educates the public through speaking engagements.
If you, or someone you know, faces the discrimination same-sex binational couples face because of DOMA, Defense of Marriage Act, you can get involved and become empowered by connecting with Out4Immigration. Tell your story. Join the mailing list on Yahoo! Groups. Write letters to the editor in support of Uniting American Families Act, UAFA, which seeks to give same-sex binational couples the same immigration rights as heterosexual couples. Meet with legislators in your district. Contact friends and family members and let them know about our plight. Volunteer for an O4I community event. March with O4I in Pride parades. Attend immigrant rights rallies. Help educate the public on our issues by joining O4I’s speakers’ bureau. Get your company’s support for UAFA. Donate to O4I, through its fiscal sponsor Peace Development Fund, http://www.peacefund.org
So, check out Out4Immigration at:
Donate to Out4Immigration (tax-deductible) at:
or mail a check, made to Peace Development Fund, to
Out4Immigration, P.O. Box 14073, San Francisco, CA 94114
Any amount really helps! And O4I appreciates all the help it gets.
Here’s my regular sign-off for blog posts:
Immigration Equality, Out4Immigration and Love Exiles Foundation are the three groups working on our issue – and the three groups who receive whatever money comes in from sales of my book, Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, Findhorn Press, 2011.
My newer project, with David W. Ross, whose new film “I Do: The Movie” will be out in June 2012, is a portrait project of LGBT binational families, United by Love, Divided by Law Portrait Project. It expands the reach of my book and will keep adding portraits as we find couples and funds to add more. We will hold events to assist the work being done for our families by Lavi Soloway and Stop the Deportations – The DOMA Project. Check out the site at
and see the Facebook page at
To follow Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, go to its Facebook page at:
Read an excerpt of my book at this link: http://bit.ly/eIyGxh
Order online from the publisher at this link:
Elizabeth Gilbert wrote the foreword to my book. She is an ally in our fight and has suffered from the immigration situation herself as part of a binational relationship. Though she and her boyfriend were able to marry, they know what the drill was and they advocate for LGBT binational families. We like that!
Remember, too, you can follow me and what I am doing and thinking and reading on twitter @tornapartbook