German family denied asylum, HSLDA appeals
Tuesday, May 14, 2013The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals today upheld the Obama Administration’s denial of asylum granted to the Romeike family.
The Romeikes fled Germany in 2008 when they were subjected to criminal prosecution for homeschooling. They were granted asylum in 2010 by Immigration Judge Lawrence O. Burman, but that grant was overturned by the Board of Immigration Appeals in 2012. A three-judge panel of the Sixth Circuit heard the Romeikes’ appeal on April 23 in Cincinnati, and issued today’s unanimous decision against the family.
“We believe the Sixth Circuit is wrong and we will appeal their decision,” said Michael Farris, HSLDA Founder and Chairman. “America has room for this family and we will do everything we can to help them.”
The court said that the Romeikes had not made a sufficient case and that the United States has not opened its doors to every victim of unfair treatment. Although the court acknowledged that the U.S. Constitution recognizes the rights of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children, it refused to concede that the harsh treatment of religiously and philosophically motivated homeschoolers in Germany amounts to persecution within our laws on asylum.
“While we will continue to fight in the courts over the issue of whether our law requires the Administration to give this family asylum, there is no doubt of the ability of the Obama Administration to use its discretion to immediately grant this family permanent asylum. We urge the Administration to do so at once,” Farris added.
“If our Administration is willing to explore a policy of leniency for millions of immigrants, it is simply inexplicable why they cannot find room for one homeschooling family from Germany,” Farris continued.
“Germany continues to persecute homeschoolers,” said Mike Donnelly, HSLDA Director of International Affairs. “The court ignored mountains of evidence that homeschoolers are harshly fined and that custody of their children is gravely threatened—something most people would call persecution. This is what the Romeikes will suffer if they are sent back to Germany.”
HSLDA will appeal the Sixth Circuit’s ruling. Please continue to keep the Romeike family and HSLDA’s litigation team in your thoughts and prayers.