Welcome back to the USA, you big wonderful gay family, you
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced its plans to change the way gay families are viewed when they enter to the United States from abroad —or rather, that it would finally like to start recognizing them as families at all.
Currently, the CBP’s definition of a what constitutes a family is limited to individuals related by blood, marriage, or adoption. This forces LGBT families entering the U.S.—foreigners and Americans alike — to either fill out a separate forms for each adult, or potentially face harsh treatment at the hands of rule-enforcing U.S. immigration officials.
The proposed change would update the CBP definition to include LGBT families, as well as foster children, stepchildren, half-siblings, legal wards, and other dependents.
“[The] CBP does not believe that the current definition encompasses other relationships where members of the public travel together as a family,” the department rather boldly states in its proposal, which must now await a public comment period and further review before actually coming to fruition.
“It’s really an acknowledgement of what’s obvious to most people: that gay families are families, and should be treated as such when they enter the United States,” Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of Immigration Equality, told the Miami Herald‘s Steve Rothaus.
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