From: The Honorable Michael M. Honda
Sent By:
alice.lin@mail.house.gov

Bill: H.R. 4798
Date: 5/20/2016

Current Cosponsors (83): Becerra, Bishop (GA), Blumenauer, Bonamici, Bordallo, Brady, Brown, Capps, Cárdenas, Cartwright, Castor, Chu, Cicilline, Clark, Clarke, Cohen, Connolly, Conyers, Crowley, Cummings, DeSaulnier, Deutch, Duckworth, Ellison, Engel, Eshoo, Farr, Gabbard, Gallego, Grayson, Green (Al), Grijalva, Gutiérrez, Hastings, Hinojosa, Huffman, Israel, Jackson Lee, Jeffries, Johnson (GA), Langevin, Lee, Levin, Lieu, Lofgren, Lowenthal, Maloney (Carolyn), Matsui, McCollum, McDermott, McGovern, Meeks,Meng, Moore, Nadler, Napolitano, Norton, Pelosi, Perlmutter, Peters, Pingree, Pocan, Quigley, Rangel, Roybal-Allard, Sablan, Schakowsky, Scott (VA), Serrano, Sires, Smith (WA), Speier, Swalwell, Takai, Takano, Tonko, Tsongas, Vargas, Veasey, Vela, Velázquez, Wasserman Schultz, Welch

Organizations in Support: National Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, National Council of La Raza (NCLR), League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), Service Employees International Union (SEIU), HIAS, Church World Service (CWS), Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services (LIRS), Immigration Equality, Human Rights Campaign (HRC), Pride @ Work, National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA), OCA Asian Pacific American Advocates, NationalKorean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC), South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT), Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), Southeast Asian Resource Action Center (SEARAC), Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO), National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA)

Dear Colleague,

This May during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, I invite you to be a cosponsor of the Reuniting Families Act of 2016 (H.R. 4798). The current family-based immigration system has not been updated in over two decades—keeping American citizens and green card holders separated from their loved ones for years and often decades.

There are currently over 4.4 million people in the family immigration backlog waiting to reunite with their family members. The average wait time for a permanent resident to sponsor an unmarried son or daughter from Mexico is over twenty
years. The average wait time for a U.S. citizen to sponsor a sibling from the Philippines is almost 25 years. The Reuniting Families Act takes important steps to modernize our family immigration system and provide relief to these families.

42% of those waiting in our family backlogs are from Asian countries and six of the the top ten countries with the longest backlog are in Asia, including the Phillipines, India, Vietnam, Mainland China, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. 37% of family members
in the backlog are from Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba.

The Reuniting Families Act advances practical solutions to solving our nation’s immigration visa backlog. It recaptures unused visas lost over the past two decades, increases per-country limits, and prevents children from aging out and losing their place
in line due to bureaucratic delays. It also honors the contribution of Filipino WWII veterans by reducing their children’s waiting time for immigrant visas.

This bill also establishes true equality in our immigration system for same-sex or interfaith binational couples where one individual is in a country that does not recognize their marriage. In particular, it provides relief to refugees and asylees who are
unable to marry in their home countries so that refugee partners can be resettled together and partners of asylum grantees can join them in the U.S.

It is past time for us to address the inhumane backlog keeping families apart. Please join me in supporting the Reuniting Families Act.

To become a cosponsor of the Reuniting Families Act or request additional information, please contact Alice Lin (alice.lin@mail.house.gov or 5-2631) in Rep. Mike Honda’s office.