I’m getting really tired of the implication I should be grateful.
Australia is meeting the bare minimum standard of decency by allowing me to immigrate as Kit’s partner. We are in a relationship and have been for over eight years. I should not have to gush at length about how good and kind it is that they recognise us as a couple and graciously allow me the chance to immigrate. The US refusing to let me sponsor her is not and should not be the baseline. They are failing.
If I visited Australia, met a man, and we eloped, I would be allowed to immigrate with less effort and signficantly more dignity. Kit and I have to provide repeated statements about our lives and history and relationship where a marriage certificate would suffice if we were straight. Because we aren’t married, we have to meet rules about length of cohabitation that are extremely difficult for us to meet because, get this, international travel is really expensive and vacation visas are really short. Because we’re both girls, we can’t get married to escape the cohabitation clauses.
We’ve tried playing by the rules. There’s a potential loophole for queers: getting registered with the state government. Nevermind that registering a domestic relationship sounds (and is) creepy, is somewhat costly, and grants us NO other rights except the waiver for how long we can afford to live in one place. Nevermind that it doesn’t even carry between states, so if we moved it means nothing. We applied anyway. But the guidelines say you have to have lived in Victoria for 12 months, the same as the cohabitation rules. Mind you, these are guidelines, not rules. There is some discretion involved. In theory. Given the reactions of everyone who has touched our paperwork, I expect that will be denied. Oh! And we won’t know for 4 weeks, because like underage children trying to get married on the sly, domestic relationships have a waiting period. You can get married the same day as you apply, but not registered, and it is entirely out of our hands. We don’t meet with someone who talks to us and assesses our merit. We submit forms and hope they are having a good day.
So, in order:
- Can’t bring Kit to the US because she’s a girl (secondarily, CP)
- Can’t live here for more than 12 months at a time unless I’m on a student visa, which is pricey due to tuition. Kit can’t live there for more than 3 months unless she got a student visa, which is even more pricey.
- Can’t get married to waive cohabitation requirements
- Can’t get registered to waive cohabitation requirements because of inbuilt cohabitation requirements for that
- Can’t actually get stuff for my visa application I need like fingerprints because the wait list is 3 months after my visa expires because Victorian bureaucracy is shit (this isn’t related to being queer, but it’s not helping, you know?)
- Can’t get any help from the embassy (I know, I’ve been emailing them all day)
- Can’t get permanent (any!) work because of my visa. Why hire someone on a visa due to end in 2 months if you can get a permanent resident or citizen?
And I’m supposed to feel grateful?
My name is Ali, though sometimes it's Eliot.
I have many tumblrs, which you are welcome to also visit:
Fuck Yeah, Kate Miller-Heidke - the only active Kate fan site, which is baffling.
The Branden Rose - the only active Monster Blood Tattoo fansite, which is less baffling.
I also have a semi-successful etsy shop, which you should visit, below.
A brief history: