Share this graphic to stand with 267,000 undocumented LGBT immigrants and their families

GLAAD is sharing this graphic to show our support for the 267,000 undocumented LGBT immigrants and their families advocating for dignity and progress on the question of relief from and reform to the current broken immigration system, and we are asking you to do the same. As a result of the current system, immigrants are housed in private detention centers that do not follow consistent standards-they are housed with the wrong populations if they are transgender, they are placed in solitary confinement for "protection," they are denied medication, they are not protected from rape and sexual assault and suffer indignities as local police units cooperate with ICE to turn routine stops into immigration raids. Immigrants detained in this system do not have guaranteed representation and their families often have a hard time finding out where they have been detained.

As it stands now millions live in fear of deportation. The impact is magnified as we realize that members of our communities cannot drive with authorization in 47 states, cannot access healthcare, face barriers confronting housing and labor abuses, fear reporting criminal activity in our neighborhoods and have few recourses to address the traumas of migration, separations and deportation. Millions of United States citizens have family members that are undocumented and share with them the indignities and barriers of the status quo. Teachers are impacted by the way that these realities affect the children in their classrooms.

Even as some measures are taken to relieve the fear of deportation for a number of immigrants, until that relief is broad and universal and comes with permanent solutions, our communities will suffer again and again. In 2012 the President created a partial relief program called DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, but the program had dates that cut off many applicants, most famously Jose Antonio Vargas of the film Documented. Those who were able to apply for DACA faced barriers, fees and complicated obstacles once they did come under the program. Although their deportations were deferred, they still had to pay out of state tuition in order to go to school and comply with the program despite living most of their lives in the states. Many states, most famously Arizona did not allow them to drive to and from school or work with authorization. They could not access health care as this article in La Opinion points out. They are still living with the fear that their family members ineligible for DACA will be deported and finally, the solution is not a permanent one and leaves their fates up to future legislators and administrations with candidates already taking hard stances in efforts they think will shore up their votes.

Here are some examples of people in our community affected by the current state of immigration policy that Immigration Equality shared with us:

Oliver is a 28-year old gay activist and men’s health advocate from Nigeria. He fled his country of origin after experiencing harassment and violence for being gay. He came to the United States in 2012 and applied for asylum due to his sexual orientation. He cannot return to Nigeria because that country has passed laws making homosexuality a crime.

Fernanda is a 36-year old transgender woman from Honduras. She came fleeing violence and rejection. Instead of being welcomed, she was put in immigration detention, where she was at risk of being assaulted by the male inmates she was housed with. Fernanda was locked up in solitary confinement for her own “protection” and was isolated for an entire month. After surviving this psychological abuse, she is still at-risk of deportation and lives in constant fear that she will be sent back to Honduras, where she would once again be beaten, raped or possibly killed.

Jose is a 25-year old gay man from El Salvador. He fled to the United Stated when he was 17 to escape violent discrimination at the hand of homophobic gang members. In 2013, Jose was detained by immigration officials in Oakland after returning from visiting his partner’s sick father in New Mexico. He spent five months in a detention center in South Texas because his family refused to help him get out after they found he was gay. They said detention was “punishment from God.” He applied for asylum.

Share this graphic to show your solidarity with the immigrant community on social media. Visit Immigration Equality, the Center for American Progress and United We Dream to learn more about the situations that impact the LGBT immigrants and their families.