As some of you may know, I have be a firm defender of individual civil right as a member of LULAC and the American Federation of Government Employees regardless of there race, creed or religious preferences.
For sometime now we have had an unacceptable situation within the State Department in that they have refused to issue US passport to citizens of the United States.
The reason for this denial?
Although these individual had provided all the required documentation such as valid birth records, school records, medical records and affidavits from independent sources proving that they were born in the US, the Stated Department had decided that this was irrelevant.
In short the State Department decided that regardless of what evidence was presented because these individuals had audacity to have been born of parent who were poor or had been born in a location where hospital were not available and these birth were attended by midwives they were not worth of a US Passport.
Further, when these denials were issued the State Department would accuse these individual of fraud but would fail to provide the evidence of the allege fraud. In some cases the individual were referred to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service to report for possible deportation.
As a result of these questionable practices several questions were raised and subsequent a class action lawsuit was filed by the ACLU. (I point out that this police was establish under the Bush Administration)
The Houston Chronicle Reports that the American Civil Liberties Union and the US State Department have reach a settlement agreement regrading a class action lawsuit that was filed by passport applicants whose birth were attended by midwives. (Friday, June 26, 2009 edition)
Under this agreement individual will be able to reapply of a US passport and if denied, the application will automatic review by a three member panel. Further, the settlement also requires that the government reviews its list of midwives suspected of birth certificate fraud to ensure there is a "reasonable belief" that they were involved in wrongdoing.
I must applaud the current administration in recognizing the importance of this issues and their quick action. I remind all my readers that as citizens of the United States, we must protect the rights of all individuals in this great country.
As always I welcome your comments.