Thursday, March 31, 2011

Reversal: Agency resumes rejecting green-card aps from same-sex couples


WASHINGTON – In a blow to the LGBT community, the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services on Wednesday resumed its policy of automatically rejecting green-card applications from same-sex spouses who are foreigners.

Last month, the Obama administration said the policy was unconstitutional, and the bureau put it on hold for more than a week.

But Wednesday, the bureau said in a statement that it had received guidance from the administration to continue to enforce the policy.

Gay rights groups expressed dismay at the turn of events, because many, including Immigration Equality, had hailed the temporary hold as a step in the right direction.

Same-sex couples do not share the same rights as straight couples when it comes to immigration issues. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which the president and many legal scholars call discriminatory and unconstitutional, bars equal standing for gay couples.

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