Treat Same-sex Marriage Essay

Submitted By chuck032
Words: 393
Pages: 2

On a more mundane level, same-sex marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships create a host of questions and considerations related to HR, benefits and general employment laws. Why would employers want to wade into these questions? For one thing, they have no choice. Even if an employer does not want to offer benefits to employees' same-sex spouses and domestic partners, they must still comply with state laws on the subject, including state laws that recognize same-sex marriage and/or domestic partnerships. Currently, eight states and the District of Columbia treat same-sex marriage the same as any other marriage; five states allow civil unions that offer the same benefits as marriage; four states allow registered domestic partnerships that provide the same general state-law benefits as marriage; and a handful of other states have laws that provide various rights to unmarried couples of any gender. According to the Human Rights Campaign, the number of employers offering domestic partner health benefits have grown significantly within the last 20 or so years. The current number of U.S. employers offering these benefits has reached 7,360, a huge increase from 1982 when New York’s Village Voice newspaper became the nation’s first employer to offer same-sex benefits. The business boom of the 90’s, along with the need to recruit talent in a competitive market, prompted many top employers to offer partner benefits. Lotus Development, Microsoft, and Boeing all began offering partner benefits in the 1990’s. Today, approximately 23% of companies offer domestic partner…