This week more than two dozen members of American Families United launched personal web sites to break their silence about being forcibly separated from their spouse or exiled under current immigration law.
“These web sites highlight the stories U.S. citizens who have been traditionally left out of comprehensive immigration reform,” said Randall Emery, American Families United president. “The legal issues these families face are the same as the 11 million living in the shadows. The difference is that we are talking about U.S. citizens, and their spouses are now going through the legal immigration system.”
In story after story, members from across the country shared how they met their spouses, the lives they built together and how their families were eventually torn apart.
Sade Bonilla, a Fullbright Scholar and a PhD candidate at Stanford University described the injustice of achieving the American dream without being able to enjoy it with her spouse.
“As a child I was told to work hard and if I did I would achieve great things,” she wrote. “I never once considered that a law passed when I was ten years old would separate me from the love of my life for five years and possibly ten years.”
For Alabama native Nicholas Martin, whose wife received a lifetime bar with no option of an appeal, the question now is whether separated families will be included in comprehensive immigration reform.
“A lot has been said in this immigration debate about what is going to happen with the 11 million undocumented present in this country, but I’m more worried about the lack of attention that is being paid to us, U.S. citizens,” he said. “Don’t we deserve a break as well?”
To read the stories of American families who have been forcibly separated or exiled by immigration law, please visit www.americanfamiliesunited.org/family_stories.