For My Wife

The Advocate
January 23, 2008
When a flash flood killed the renowned audiobook narrator Kate Fleming, her partner, Charlene Strong, endured firsthand the cruel consequences of having been unable to marry and secure legal protections. Now she is making a documentary to tell their story and change the law--in memory of the woman who was her wife in every way but legally. [link]

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Add your voice to the chorus calling for equality and dignity

Seattle Times
August 9, 2007
Even after Kate's passing, I still had to fight for recognition as her spouse. Since I was not her legal wife, the funeral director would not address me as Kate's family or let me make her funeral arrangements. Kate's mother had to sign the request for her cremation. The death certificate stated that she had never been married. Kate's voice could no longer speak out against these mounting indignities. Now that many presidential candidates are making the effort to listen to our stories, we must speak up about the gravity of the rights that anti-gay marriage amendments may take away. [link]

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Same-sex couples register vows in Olympia

Seattle Post-Intelligencer
July 24, 2007

Same-sex couples with mixed feelings lined up for domestic partner registration on Monday morning in Washington and "said the new set of legal rights that went into effect Monday morning — including hospital visitation, property inheritance and funeral planning — were steps in the right direction but still a far cry from full marriage equality." [link]

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EDITORIAL: First comes partnership, then comes marriage

The Seattle Times
July 24, 2007
The Seattle Times notes the importance of gaining some protections for same-sex couples with the new domestic partnership law in Washington, but presses activists to finish the job at the state Capitol by demanding full marriage equality: "The domestic-partnership law fortifies the argument for gay marriage. Supporters need to return to Olympia and push for what they should be civilly entitled to." [link]

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Domestic partners line up for rights with reservations

Seattle Post-Intelligencer
July 20, 2007
Paul Thomasson and his partner, Paul Phelps, took time Friday to get their registration form notarized and plan to register by mail. Thomasson's parents asked if they could hold a reception after their son and Phelps registered as domestic partners. Phelps declined, saying the process was a "half-step" of legal rights. "You would not celebrate after visiting your attorney and executing a living will and deciding what (your partner) will do after you die, as callous as it sounds," Phelps said. [link]

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WA woman shares tale of denial at bedside of her dying partner

The Olympian
June 17, 2007
Four months ago, Lacey resident Janice Langbehn, her partner Lisa Pond and their children Katie, David and Danielle, ages 10 to 13, were set for a relaxing cruise from Miami to the Bahamas. But Pond, Langbehn's partner for nearly 18 years, was stricken in Miami with a brain aneurysm and died. After Pond was taken to the emergency room, Langbehn said she was informed by a social worker that they were in an "anti-gay state" and that they needed legal paperwork before Langbehn could see Pond. The family was not allowed to be with her in the emergency room, and Langbehn's authority to make decisions for Pond was not recognized. [Link]

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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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WA gov. signs domestic partnership law

Bay Area Reporter
April 26, 2007

Evan Wolfson said domestic partnerships such as in California and Washington are an important "first step" toward marriage equality. But he said both contain aspects that are "diminishing" of their meaning to gay couples. Both, he noted, have very limited benefits hospital visitation, authorizing autopsies, and inheritance rights when there is no will. Both also allow seniors to register as domestic partnerships, conveying an impression that the law is not so much to recognize same-sex couples as to handle some legal issues for pairs of people who live together and share expenses.

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Freedom to Marry Voice of Equality shares message of equality, activism

The Daily Evergreen
March 5, 2007
Dolores Huerta's speech at Pullman University touched on a variety of issues — including women's roles, racism, social injustice, immigration and marriage equality. "Once we know, we have to act on our knowledge. Nothing is going to change unless we change it." Huerta said, encouraging students to take attainable steps toward change, such as calling out people who use degrading terminology, organizing in groups to support causes, and writing letters to legislators.[link]

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Activists predict progress in NY, CA, WA, this year

Washington Blade
January 26, 2007

Evan Wolfson
, executive director of Freedom to Marry, said there is also reason for hope in Massachusetts.
"The new legislature has more pro-marriage legislators combined with a new pro-marriage governor. This will allow wiser heads to prevail. If it gets on the ballot, we will defeat it, but I would rather spend our resources for other states in their battles for marriage equality."


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