Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Friday, September 28, 2012

Feds to Ease Up on Deporting Gay Immigrants With American Partners

Posted By on Fri, Sep 28, 2012 at 1:15 PM


Two years ago, SF Weekly highlighted the sad story of gay immigrants who were being forced to choose between love and leaving the U.S.

But it appears that conundrum is no more. According to Washington reports, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has decided that gay and lesbian partners will be deemed "family members" when immigration agents consider deportation.

Essentially, that means gay immigrants with American partners won't be automatically deported, just as heterosexual couples are spared.

In a letter to Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Napolitano said

In an effort to make clear the definition of the phrase "family relationships," I have directed ICE to disseminate written guidance to the field that the interpretation of the phrase "family relationships" includes long-term, same-sex partners.

Pelosi has led the fight to undo this politically charged immigration issue that's torn too many gay couples apart. Of course, this new directive says much about Obama's intentions on immigration. The president has made it clear he would like to focus on deporting immigrants who have a long criminal history in the United States.

In trying to parse out the immigration issue, the president crafted policy that would push ICE agents to look for extenuating circumstances that might make immigrants less likely candidates for deportation. One of those circumstances included separation from family.

And now, same-sex couples are considered family. 

Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF

  • Pin It

Tags: , , , ,

About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"