One would think that the U.S. government cares about families and would not create laws that would separate them. Unfortunately, this is not true, everyday millions of families are fighting to keep their families together. This is the case for millions of U.S. Citizens married to undocumented immigrants. They are being punished for having said "yes" and entered into a marriage. Many of these couples have children born in this country. The immigration laws are illogical and unconstitutional. They violate the right to due process and the pursuit of happiness to US Citizens who are married to undocumented immigrants. For this reason, we are organizing a class action law suit that will challenge the laws pertaining to U.S. Citizens, in this case, the I-601 waiver.
The I-601 waiver, is the only form of relief for those who entered without inspection and have not lived more than 10 years in hte US and came after 2001, to be admitted to the United States. This waiver does not necessarily excuse the immigrant from entering without inspection. It simply allows that immigrant the opportunity to apply though consular processing for a visa number which will then allow him to seek permanent residence in the United States. Without this waiver, the immigrant would not be given a visa number, and therefore would be unable to seek legalization. A person who is illegal in the US and is deported from the US is banned from re-entering the US for 3-10 years if you overstayed less or over 180 days. You cannot re-enter the US, unless you seek a 212 waiver after deportation. Most immigrants in deportation proceedings are advised by thier legal counsels to ask for "voluntary departure", which will allow the immigrant to leave on their own terms and be given between 60-120 days to depart the US and without the stigma of having being "deported" but you cannot seek any other relief if choose this option.
Regardless of how you leave the country, the immigrant still needs a I-601 waiver if they plan to re-enter the US legally. If granted, the 601 waiver will excuse or pardon any reasons for excludability which includes overstaying more than 180 days, criminal convictions, associations with terrorist organizations, infectious diseases and other forms of exclusion.
In order to be granted a I-601 waiver, the US Citizen, petitioner, has to prove to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) or the U.S. Attorney General that the U.S. Citizen will suffer "extreme hardship". This is where the problem starts because the definition of "extreme hardship" is vague and your life can depend on whom defines this test of hardship. They will not take into account the hardships or suffering of the illegal immigrant but rely solely on the evidence provided by the U.S. Citizen. If the Immigration Officer, does not grant this 601 waiver, then the immigrant relative will have to wait outside of the US for whatever period their bar , which is usually 10 years. Ten years, or a decade is a long time to wait for a US Citizen spouse, specially those with children. The Ciitizen spouse has to choose whether to follow their spouse to a strange country or to stay without them and suffer in the US. Whatever choice they make they are directly being punished for simply marrying an undocumented immigrant. For this reason, we challenge the current immigration procedures and ask for the I-601 waiver to be decided by a jury not an Immigration Officer because it directly affects a US Citizen. The US Citizen is being denied due process and the pursuit of happiness.
We ask those US Citizens who have been affected by the 601 waiver to join us.
- USCIS-Western Region
- President of the United States
- New Jersey State Senate
- New Jersey State House
- U.S. Senate
- U.S. House of Representatives
- USCIS-Southern Region
- USCIS-Northern Region
- New Jersey Governor
Dear Government Official:
On behalf of all U.S. Citizens, who are married to an undocumented immigrant who entered without inspection, we will like to request that you change your immigration procedures that directly affect a citizen. For this reason we are asking that you allow US Citizens to petition for their immigrant spouses and allow for adjustment of status from within the US, regardless of how they entered the US. We feel that consular processing outside of the US should not be an option because it is a form of punishment to a US Citizen for having married an undocumented immigrant. In addition, the I-601 waiver of inadmissibility is unconstitutional because it violates our rights to due process and the pursuit of happiness. An immigration official should not be making decisions that are directly going to impact on a US Citizen’s life, instead it should be a jury. Being that, entry without inspection is only considered a violation of immigration law not technically a crime, the 3-10 year bar is not just. Ten years is a decade and is just in time for the next US Census. A lot happens in 3 and 10 year that can cause serious damage to a family. We have to may dysfunctional families in America already, we don’t need anymore. If an undocumented immigrant wants to provide love and financial support for their family then don’t make it almost impossible for that to happen because the US Citizen they leave behind may turn to welfare for support. So, if you are not ready to support these families financially, then don’t deny their right to stay together and adjust status in the US. If it were a crime, then we would be asking for a jury to decide on each case. We are not just numbers but real flesh and bone people who feel the separation of our loved ones. Your current policies are not taking into consideration the financial and emotional damage that you are causing your citizens. We urge you to reconsider, your current policies and make the necessary changes to protect our constitutional rights. You never know when your son, daughter, niece, nephew will be in our shoes.
Maria DaSilva started this petition with a single signature, and now has 111 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.