"I have never welcomed the weakening of family ties by politics or pressure" - Nelson Mandela.
"He who travels for love finds a thousand miles no longer than one" - Japanese proverb.
"Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence." - Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
"When people's love is divided by law, it is the law that needs to change". -
David Cameron.

Sunday 26 January 2014

Paul & Connie

“No one should be punished for something as harmless as loving someone from outside their borders.”

Paul is a British citizen living in Nottingham. He met his wife, Connie from California, USA when he was pursuing postgraduate studies in response to the economic crash when jobs were scarce. She was also here to build her own skills set in the UK education system.

Now this couple is 6000 miles apart only because of UK’s immigration rules. With the monetary bar raised with the Coalition’s immigration reform, their separation feels much stronger.

Paul is still in education – and neither he nor Connie come from rich families. They feel the £18,600 is an arbitrary barrier serving to punish the poor. Paul is firm in his belief that this threshold has been erected under false pretences; the notion that immigration is somehow responsible for the myriad economic and social woes besetting the people of the UK is actually a xenophobic smokescreen to confuse the public.

The couple has strived and struggled for the last three years, stuck apart, only seeing each other for a scant few weeks but they know their story is far from the worst. Families have been thrown asunder, punished for loving each other across petty political borders we uphold.

Paul and his wife have both suffered from depression, each of them undergoing therapy, just trying to survive apart without any certainty of when they will be able to be together.

Recently though they received some good news. Connie has been successful in obtaining a well-paid job despite the current economic conditions. So Paul is considering relocating to USA, although this means being away from his family and friends.

No one should be punished for something as harmless as loving someone from outside their borders.

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