Partners Task Force for Gay & Lesbian Couples
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Quotes: Domestic Partnership Benefits
© April 25, 2008, Demian

“Love manifests itself not in some cookie-cutter way. Love comes in many forms. Our families are different, but every one of our families deserves our undivided support.”

       — Governor Christine Gregoire upon signing the Washington State
            domestic partnership registration law on April 21, 2007

“Health insurance hardly falls into the category of ‘special rights,’ as anti-gay-rights groups like to describe what gay couples seek. Medical insurance is so fundamental to a decent life that to deny it on the basis of who a man or woman chooses to love and make a life with can only be called bigoted. The religious right doesn’t like that harsh word, but it is apt for such narrowness and cruelty.”

       — Editorial, Berkshire Eagle, Massachusetts, April 10, 2005

“The person(s) who plays a significant role in the individual’s [patient’s] life. This may include a person(s) not legally related to the individual”

       — Joint Commission Resources JCR, 2001 Hospital Accreditation Standards, p.322, from the Joint Commission
            on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, a national hospital evaluation and accrediting group.

“I signed that bill because I believe no human being should be treated with less dignity than others simply because that person belongs to a different category or group.”

       — Vermont Governor Howard Dean, remarks to the Associated Press, April 21, 2003,
            on the third anniversary of the signing of the Civil Unions bill.

“A Family: two or more persons who share resources, share responsibilities for decisions, share values and goals, and have commitments to one another over a period of time. The family is that climate that one comes home to; and it is that network of sharing and commitment that most accurately describes the family unit, regardless of blood, legalities, adoption or marriage.”

       — Home Economics Association

“Corporate benefits have two basic purposes: (1) to enhance the overall compensation package in order to attract and retain the very best employees, and (2) to cushion the impact of personal and family crises in order to reduce their adverse effect on an employee’s job performance. By providing domestic-partner benefits to gay, lesbian, and bisexual employees, a company satisfies those two purposes. Such benefits make working for one company more attractive to talented gay people than working for another that has no benefits. Likewise, knowing that their savings will not be wiped out to pay for a partner’s recovery from a possible illness reduces unnecessary stress and enables gay employees to focus on their work.”

       — Brian McNaught, Gay Issues in the Workplace, 1993

“Companies are starting to realize that by extending domestic partner benefits coverage, they are making an effort to eliminate workplace discrimination and provide all employees with equal compensation for equal work.”

       — Management Review, November, 1995

“While there has been no evidence of any organization losing money over inclusive policies, there is plenty to suggest that being discriminatory can be costly. Cases in point include the public’s reaction to recent headlines involving discrimination by Texaco and Avis. Consider, too, that Colorado’s anti-gay Amendment 2 battle, and the boycott that resulted, cost that state more than $140 million. And Cobb County, Georgia, lost more than $20 million when its condemnation of homosexuality prompted Olympic officials to move the volleyball competition elsewhere for last summer’s Summer Games”

       — Boston Globe, March 23, 1997

“Research is answering companies’ most obvious objection — cost — to increasing employee benefits at a time when benefits generally are being cut. The number of people who use partner benefits, it turns out, is lower than expected and the actual cost of enrolling a partner is less than for a married spouse.”

       — New York Times, June 13, 1993

“A 1993 Brown University study (cited in the June 1995 ABA Journal) found that only 0.36 to 0.77 percent of employees sign up for domestic partner benefits. Firms found that their $100,000 allocations for planned costs finally only came to about $10,000, due to low sign-up.”

       — Partners Task Force for Gay & Lesbian Couples, 1995

“Internally, when an organization acknowledges the validity of sexual orientation, and then accommodates it through workplace policies and programs, the company makes itself attractive to a larger pool of potential workers. And that is important given that companies report that their biggest problem is finding and retaining workers.”

       — Boston Globe, March 23, 1997

“Offering domestic partnership benefits is the one tangible thing that companies can do to show that their equal employment opportunity statements are not just so many fine-sounding sentiments.”

       — Baker, Strub, and Henning, Cracking the Corporate Closet, 1995

“It has been proven that organizations that are out in front of societal trends toward openness and inclusion perform better economically over the long-term than those that lag behind such trends. Consider that 1996 was the fourth straight year that the Stonewall Index comprising 36 gay-friendly companies outperformed both the Dow and the Standard & Poors Index.”

       — Boston Globe, March 23, 1997

“To support equal rights for gay and lesbian Americans is to join the ongoing fight for protection of everyone’s individual rights. The business leaders who are taking a stand and establishing or reaffirming their commitment to gay and lesbian emancipation are taking a stand for their own economic prosperity as well.”

       — Grant Lukenbill, Untold Millions, 1995

“Domestic partner benefits are among the most tangible ways that an employer chooses to express the value it holds for a loyal employee. Without domestic partner benefits, gay and lesbian employees will forever remain a separate and unequal group of workers.”

       — Human Rights Campaign

“Domestic partnership benefits should be made available to anyone who is living in a relationship that varies from those which are allowed under the obsolete marriage laws in the United States. Every American citizen benefits from the extension of domestic partnership protection because it helps relieve potential financial distress and increase worker productivity.

“Interpersonal relationships in post-industrial society are undergoing vast changes, and relatively few people still live in the traditional nuclear family. However, as long as conservative religious groups continue to oppose changes in marriage laws which would incorporate these social changes, we must look to alternative legislation to secure the new relationships.

“I cannot believe there is any logical rationale for limiting the domestic partnership protections on the basis of sexual orientation.”

       — James Levin, Esq., New York, N.Y.

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Quotes — Affirmations and Provocations on Same-sex Couples

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