Gay couple sues US State Department for rejecting daughter’s citizenship


Gay couple sues US State Department for rejecting daughter's citizenship

Gay couple suing US State Department over rejecting daughter’s citizenship. | Photo: James Derek Mize / Facebook

A gay couple is suing the US State Department for rejecting their daughter’s application for citizenship.

On behalf of their daughter Simone, James Derek Mize and Jonathan Daniel Gregg filed a lawsuit on Tuesday (23 July) in the US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta.

They claim the State Department ‘unlawfully discriminate[s] against children simply because their parents are a same-sex couple’.

Why did the State Department reject the citizenship application?

James Mize was born and raised in the US, but Jonathan Gregg was born and raised in the UK. They married in London but have lived in the US for the last few years together.

Two years ago, with the help of an English surrogate, they used an anonymous egg donor and Gregg’s sperm to create Simone.

Simone was born in Huntingdon, a small town in Cambridgeshire, England.

As Simone is the daughter of a legally-recognized married couple, the State Department should automatically classify her as a US citizen under Section 301(c) of the INA.

Under that provision, a person born outside the United States to two married US citizens, at least one of whom has resided in the United States at any time, is a national and citizen of the United States at birth.

But when the couple applied for citizenship for their daughter, the US State Department disregarded their marriage and evaluated the application as if Simone was ‘born out of wedlock’, due to the US citizen having no biological link to the child.

The State Department ultimately rejected Simone’s claim for citizenship because Gregg had not lived in the US for more than five years.

The policy is ‘wrong and hurts families’

As a result, the State Department ‘erroneously applied two sets of more stringent requirements’, according to the couple’s official complaint.

‘The State Department’s policy of treating children born to married same-sex couples and one of their legal parents as strangers is wrong and hurts families,’ the official complaint states. ‘It is also unlawful.’

It then added: ‘The State Department’s unjust policy and practices should be enjoined because they violate the Immigration and Nationalization Act (INA), unconstitutionally disregard the dignity and equality of the marriages of same-sex couples, and unlawfully discriminate against children simply because their parents are a same-sex couple.’

The gay couple are seeking a declaration that Simone has been a US citizen since birth and an order instructing the State Department to issue her a passport immediately.

They would also like to see a change in the US Constitution so same-sex couples do not face this ‘discrimination’ in the future.

Read their full complaint.

See also

Michigan just stopped LGBTI discrimination by religious adoption agencies

Judge overrules government to grant US citizenship to son of gay parents

Gay dad and daughter trapped in Thailand after surrogacy turns sour


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