Reuniting Families Act Upholds Family Unity in U.S. Immigration System

Posted on Thu, May 21, 2009 at 10:05 am

(Washington, D.C.) – HIAS, the international migration agency of the American Jewish community, applauds yesterday’s introduction of the Reuniting Families Act into the United States Senate.

If enacted, the bill, sponsored by Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Edward Kennedy (D-MA), and Charles Schumer (D-NY), would decrease waiting times for close family members of U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents joining their families in the U.S. In some cases, spouses and young children are separated for years from their immediate relatives before they are allowed to enter the U.S. Since families are the bedrock of a strong society, such lengthy separations have severe consequences.

According to Gideon Aronoff, President and CEO of HIAS, “The United States must find a way to expedite the process of family reunification. Current waiting times for family members to reunite are unacceptable and unfair. This bill is a much needed change to the current family immigration system, which has not been updated in 20 years.”

HIAS is grateful to Senators Menendez, Gillibrand, Kennedy, and Schumer for introducing this legislation that would uphold family unity as the cornerstone of U.S. immigration policy.