I heard recently from Christina Avila who is fighting to be reunited with her husband Melvin. Despite being married to a US citizen and having US citizen children, USCIS thinks that being separated for 10+ years is no big deal and not a serious hardship. Hence, Melvin's waiver application has been denied. Don't expect USCIS to comment on this story. They usually cite their interest in protecting the privacy of the person taking his or her case to the media, as dumb as that sounds.
Christina has put together a web site and is contacting bloggers and others in the media to try and bring attention to her husband's predicament. From the site:
Melvin was deported from the US to Honduras July 2010 after spending 15 years in the US. After waiting two years, trying to return to the US legally, USCIS denied Melvin's I-601 Hardship and I-212 Permission to Reapply waivers in July 2012, claiming that there was not enough proven hardship Melvin's U.S. citizen wife.
Melvin's wife of 7 years, 5 year-old daughter, 7 and 13 year-old sons, 8 year-old stepson, in-laws, and friends all miss him very much. His wife and the two children they have together have only been able to visit him once since his deportation; his oldest son and his stepson have not seen him since the day he was taken into custody on June 30, 2010. Melvin keeps in touch regularly by telephone, which has kept the relationships strong.
Melvin has health issues, including Diabetes and Depression, and no access to health insurance. He has been mugged at least 10 times since being in Honduras and was almost killed several of those times. He has been unable to obtain employment in Honduras, so his wife has had to send him money regularly, which is a financial strain for her, as a single mother of three. Many days, Melvin goes hungry because he simply does not want to burden his wife by asking for money.
Melvin's wife and children are also suffering multiple hardships, including emotional and financial. His wife's depression and anxiety, dating back to 2005, has intensified in his absence, as she has had to work full-time on top of finishing her MA degree and caring for three children, who have had some emotional and behavior issues since their father's removal. Melvin has a job awaiting him in the US that will allow him to support his family and give him access to health benefits.