BLOG: Surging past WA on gay rights: CA, MA, OR… and Colombia?

The Stranger's Blog
June 16, 2007
Dan Savage writes, "The Washington State domestic partnership law includes the right to inherit property in the absence of a will but it does not mandate health insurance coverage for DPs or social security benefits (which are, unfortunately, in the hands of the feds). Still, if they're passing laws in Colombia—Colombia!—that go farther than Washington's DP law, we can and should do better, and demand more, during the next legislative session." [link]

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A way to keep domestic partner benefits in MI

Inside Higher Ed
June 15, 2007
Michigan's public colleges and universities were barred by a state appeals court in February from offering health and other benefits to the same-sex domestic partners of employees. So Michigan State University is trying another tack: extending benefits to people it labels "other eligible individuals." [Link]

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[Civil unions spread, but gay people want to wed

Stateline
May 31, 2007
"Civil unions are nothing like marriage," Garden State Equality Director Steven Goldstein said. "The cockamamie contraption simply doesn't work. If civil unions were a person, they would be arrested for fraud." [link]

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BLOG: Stop calling my civil union a marriage

Blue Jersey
May 23, 2007
Ignoring the differences between civil unions and marriage doesn't make them go away. Pretending that civil unions are the same as marriage doesn't make it true. The latest news here in New Jersey is proving, just as Blue Jersey predicted, that civil unions are an inferior status that don't work in the real world, and aren't working in New Jersey. [link]

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Top CT court hears the case for marriage equality

New York Times
May 20, 2007
Like three other couples who are plaintiffs, Ms. Conklin and Ms. Peck have not entered into a civil union and are holding out for marriage. "A civil union carries a second-rate status for our relationship," Ms. Peck said. "Carol is the love of my life, and I want to marry her." [Link]

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CT marriage case is breaking new ground

New York Times
May 15, 2007
Connecticut's highest court became the first in the nation to hear arguments over whether the establishment of civil unions created a fundamentally inferior status for gays and lesbians. (Link)

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Connecticut’s Ban on Gay Marriages Doesn’t Stop Families From Forming

New London Day (Reprinted by Love Makes A Family)
May 13, 2007

When 4-year-old Kailey wanted to see a picture of the "pretty dress" her mother wore when she got married, Eileen Ego and Corrine Frost knew it was time to have a talk with their daughter. Kailey's two moms, who have been together for 15 years, worried about explaining to their daughter why her parents are not married. [Link]

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Civil unions law adds complexity to benefits plans in NH

New Hampshire Business Review
May 11, 2007
Although ERISA preempts state laws that relate to benefits, laws relating to insurance are not preempted. As a result, it is expected that the New Hampshire Insurance Department will rule that if an employer offers medical insurance coverage for married employees, the civil union law requires the employer to offer similar coverage to those in a civil union. But employers that provide self-insured medical, dental and other benefits to employees are not subject to the same state insurance laws because ERISA does cover them. Therefore, they will not be obligated to provide the same coverage to employees in civil unions as they do to married employees — although they could do so on a voluntary basis. [link]

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BLOG: It’s official: OR gov signs civil unions, anti-discrimination

Daily Kos
May 9, 2007
Hooray! It ain't marriage and it ain't portable, but if you're gay and one of you lives in Oregon, now at least you can get most of the same STATE rights and benefits as married couples routinely do...and that's a great thing. A long time coming, and another reminder that ELECTIONS MATTER. These bills died in 2005 despite a Dem-led Senate and Governor's mansion; the House was still led by the GOP. In 2006 control flipped and—like magic, NOT!—now suddenly they are law. [link]

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Gay couples learn that civil union isn’t the same as marriage

Concord Monitor
May 6, 2007
In the seven years since Vermont became the first state to create civil unions, couples have uncovered countless ways in which their unions differ from non-gay marriage. Because the federal government doesn't acknowledge civil unions, same-sex couples miss out on the federal benefits afforded non-gay married couples. And because many states have conflicting laws, a couple's rights can evaporate when they cross the state line. [link]

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