President Obama announces plan to ensure social security for all married same-sex couples
February 02, 2015
Today, February 2, President Obama announced a new budget proposal that includes a change to the Social Security Act that would allow all legally married same-sex couples to receive the full array of protections regardless of the state they live in.
Evan Wolfson, president and founder of Freedom to Marry, applauded President Obama for his continued support for the freedom to marry:
Once again, President Obama has demonstrated his commitment to fairness and freedom for all Americans, including same-sex couples and their families. His proposal to ensure equal Social Security benefits would fix a crucial gap in federal protections for same-sex couples.President Obama's leadership in helping bring the freedom to marry to all Americans will be a shining part of this president's legacy. Of course, the only way to ensure same-sex couples nationwide have all the protections of marriage is for the Supreme Court to put the country on the right side of history by ending marriage discrimination throughout the United States, leaving no family and no state behind.
The plan to extend Social Security benefits even to married same-sex couples who live in one of the 14 states that continues to deny the freedom to marry would impact hundreds of families across the country. Goldberg’s primary income is Social Security. For example, Arlene Goldberg, a widow from Florida, was denied Social Security protections despite her marriage to her partner of 47 years, Carol Goldwasser. The Miami Herald reported:
Goldberg’s primary income is Social Security. Because Florida doesn’t recognize Goldberg’s marriage, she is unable to qualify as Goldwasser’s widow and collect her Social Security payments, which were $700 more each month than Goldberg’s.
Because Florida doesn’t recognize Goldberg’s marriage, she is unable to qualify as Goldwasser’s widow and collect her Social Security payments, which were $700 more each month than Goldberg’s.