Henry Velandia and Josh Vandiver were married on August 29, 2010 in Montville Connecticut, one of the 5 states that currently grant same sex marriages. Unfortunately, the two have not been able to enjoy a honeymoon and start building their lives together in the months since.
Henry immigrated to the US in 2002 from his native Venezuela, and is now facing a deportation hearing in November because his husband cannot sponsor a spouse for citizenship by the Defense of Marriage Act. Because DOMA prevents the federal government from recognizing same sex marriages, Josh, a US citizen and current Princeton graduate student, is unable to sponsor Henry for a green card that would allow him to stay in the United States, as any straight couple in the same situation would be able to do.
Our hearts go out to Henry and Josh, and we wish them luck on November 17th when they enter Henry’s hearing just days after their fourth anniversary. If you would like to help, you can sign a petition to Janet Napolitano here and find out more information on this page and this page.
The Dems have worked hard this year supporting marriage equality and immigration reform. One of our wonderful prefrosh brought this heartwrenching situation to our attention, reminding us that no issues exist in isolation and that we must continue to fight.