FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2010
CONTACT: Vaishalee Raja, Equality California
PHONE: 916-284-9187 EMAIL: vaishalee AT eqca DOT org
CONTACT: Hilda M. Delgado, Assemblymember Hector De La Torre
PHONE: 562-927-1200 EMAIL: hilda DOT delgado AT asm DOT ca DOT gov
California Assembly Passes Bill Expanding Unemployment Benefits for Domestic Partners
Sacramento—Today, the California State Assembly passed the Unemployment Benefits Act (AB 2055). Introduced by Assemblymember Hector De La Torre (D-South Gate) and sponsored by Equality California, the bill will ensure that same-sex couples in California have access to unemployment benefits.
"The Unemployment Benefits Act will end one of the ways same-sex couples are still discriminated against in California as a result of being denied the right to civil marriage," said Geoff Kors, executive director of Equality California. "This bill will ensure that same-sex couples in committed relationships who plan to enter into a registered domestic partnership have the same access to benefits that affect the wellbeing and security of their families that heterosexual couples presently have. Equality California continues to seek legislative fixes to address the State of California's unequal relationship recognition due to Proposition 8."
Currently, heterosexual couples who are planning to marry are eligible for unemployment benefits if one of the partners loses his or her job. If passed, the bill would extend the same rights to same-sex couples planning to enter into a domestic partnership.
"Two adults who have chosen to share one another's lives in a committed relationship whether registered or not need this protection. Providing them with the same benefit is the right thing to do," said Assemblymember Hector De La Torre. "This bill helps preserve family unity and continues our commitment to treat all families equally."
To find out more information about EQCA's legislation, visit www.eqca.org/legislation.
Equality California (EQCA) is the largest statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender-rights advocacy organization in California. Over the past decade, Equality California has strategically moved California from a state with extremely limited legal protections for LGBT individuals to a state with some of the most comprehensive civil rights protections in the nation. Equality California has passed over 60 pieces of legislation and continues to advance equality through legislative advocacy, electoral work, public education and community empowerment. www.eqca.org