Marriage without Borders is the direct response to the latest Alien Rights Bill („Fremdenrechtspaket“) which has massively infringed upon the quality of life of bi-national couples since its enactment on January 1st, 2006. Marriage no longer warrants the right to residence or the right to a joint family life. Furthermore marriage no longer provides access to the job market. At the same time bi-national couples are confronted with a range of stereotypes and prejudices.
The initiative Marriage without Borders is fighting against regulations which inhibit a joint family life. The initiative’s main objective is equal rights for bi-national couples – married or living in a joint household. The initiative considers itself an exchange platform for bi-national families and partnerships; a platform which keeps growing in knowledge, commitment, and experience through its members. People from all ways of life, with various professional backgrounds and from many different nations via their activities are making visible to the general public that their desire and capability to live in Austria as an integral part of Austrian society is very real.
Bi-national couples contribute their know-how and experiences and support each other in developing independent activities. The persons concerned have become experts in the area of the very complex Alien Bill and are establishing a set of ‘best practice’ strategies in dealing with the discrimination on behalf of authorities. The initiative is very much a ‚group in process’ and acts in a dynamic and innovative fashion. Members contribute their skills, strengths, and interests at the regular meetings thereby initiating and developing activities for the general public. These activities have a two-fold goal: voicing demands and addressing stereotypes and prejudice. The aim is to allow for the public to witness that bi-national relationships are no exotic deviation but rather very normal partnerships. The initiative Marriage without Borders is consistently in contact with the press and other media and thereby has a direct access to the public. Legal advice and counseling is provided through individual counseling.
Right from the start www.ehe-ohne-grenzen.at established alliances and started networking with various NGOs and human rights organizations.
Although Marriage without Borders focuses on bi-national couples and partnerships it feels a strong solidarity with all persons and groups who are discriminated against through the Alien Rights Act.
Marriage without Borders