Domestic partner policy provides equality

Letter to the editor

Posted: Sunday, November 16, 2003

As recommended by the city's Health Benefits Committee, the CBJ has a new policy to provide health insurance benefits for unmarried same- and opposite-sex domestic partners. The city has a set of qualification standards to which domestic partners that have been together for at least one year will be held. This policy finally provides equitable health coverage for all city employees who share their lives with a partner. For same-sex partners, it allows some equity in a state that has failed to provide any mechanism to recognize their union (e.g. marriage).

City officials have accommodated the offended Mr. Lawrence Love and others who refuse to sign health insurance forms that include the words "domestic partner" by offering separate paperwork for married employees and those with domestic partners. Regardless, Mr. Love finds it necessary to lead the effort against domestic partner coverage by circulating a petition to city-employed union members ("City Health Plan Spurs Worker Petition," Nov. 13).

Given that half of all marriages end in divorce, Mr. Love might consider that the odds of a marriage lasting "until death do us part" are that of a coin toss. If Mr. Love truly wants health insurance forms for married employees without the words "domestic partner," perhaps his time would be best spent circulating a petition to get an initiative on a statewide ballot that ensures equality in health care by allowing a same-sex employees with a domestic partner to enter into that heads or tails agreement of marriage.

Jackie Timothy


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