From Nora Skelly of the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service:

In early 2012, the Administration announced a proposed change to a rule regarding immigrants’ ability to permanently reunify with their U.S. citizen spouses or parents. The current policy forces undocumented immigrants to return to their home countries and wait for a waiver regarding the extreme hardship their family members would face as a result of separation.

Today, the Department of Homeland Security announced that this change will go into effect on March 4, 2013. This is welcome news! Though the rule will not apply to the relatives of Lawful Permanent Residents, as many of us called for, DHS has signaled a willingness to consider this expansion in the future. For more detail, the press release from LIRS may be read online at

It’s a small step… but it’s progress, people!