In the News

Gay Spouses of Members of Military Get Benefits
source: The New York Times
posted: 8/14/13
The Defense Department announced Wednesday that it would begin offering benefits to the same-sex spouses of military personnel and other employees by early September, in response to the Supreme Court decision that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act.

Under the plan, spousal and family benefits — including health care coverage, housing allowances and survivor benefits — will be available to all legally married military spouses. The same-sex spouses of service members and civilian Defense D

Gays in Russia Find No Haven, Despite Support From the West
source: The New York Times
posted: 8/11/13
If this article were published in a newspaper based in Russia, it could be labeled 18+ — like an X-rated movie — and start with the following disclaimer: “This article contains information not suitable for readers younger than 18 years of age, according to Russian legislation.”

Such warnings, put on any articles that discuss homosexuality or gay rights, are the result of a law nominally aimed at “protecting” children by banning “propaganda on nontraditional sexual relationships” but widely u

Hundreds protest in London against Russian anti-gay law
source: Chicago Tribune
posted: 8/10/13
Hundreds of people protested in London on Saturday against a Russian anti-gay propaganda law that has attracted international condemnation as the world
athletics championships kick off in Moscow.

Gathering in the British capital near the residence of Prime Minister David Cameron and the foreign ministry, demonstrators called for the government to push Russia to repeal the laws.

"Putin is the 'Czar of Homophobia'," veteran gay rights
campaigner Peter Tatchell wrote on his website ahead of

NBC Reassures Gay Employees About Sochi Trip
source: NPR
posted: 8/9/13
NBC is assuring its gay and lesbian employees who may cover the Winter Olympics in Sochi that it will do everything possible to keep them safe following Russia's passage of anti-gay law.

The network said in a memo that it finds Russia's law and the prejudices it represents to be "deeply troubling and diametrically opposed to everything that the Olympics symbolize." The note by Craig Robinson, NBC Universal's executive vice president and chief diversity officer, was sent Thursday to all compan

Obama Rejects Boycott Of Olympics In Russia
source: NPR
posted: 8/9/13
President Barack Obama rejected the idea of the United States boycotting the Winter Olympics in Sochi next year despite several significant disputes with Russia.

Answering questions Friday at a White House news conference, Obama said the United States was reassessing its relationship with Moscow but that U.S. athletes should not be penalized by the nations' differences.

"I do not think it's appropriate to boycott the Olympics," Obama told reporters. "We've got a bunch of Americans out ther

Pa. county grants 100th same-sex marriage license
source: SFGate/San Francisco Chronicle
posted: 8/9/13
A suburban Philadelphia county defying Pennsylvania's marriage law issued its 100th same-sex license Friday, just weeks after opening the courthouse door to gay men and women.

Montgomery County Democrats behind the quiet rebellion said they want to be on the right side of history.

However, it's not clear the new unions will survive a legal challenge from Republican Gov. Tom Corbett's administration. And it's even less clear they will be recognized when it comes to health insurance, taxes a

Gay rights group: Don't delay marriage in NJ
source: SFGate/San Francisco Chronicle
posted: 8/9/13
Lawyers for a group of gay couples said in a court filing Friday that New Jersey's key argument against allowing same-sex marriage immediately is "contrary to established law."

The reply brief filed Friday is the last one expected before oral arguments on gay marriage in New Jersey, scheduled for Thursday.

Six couples and several of their children sued the state two years ago pressing for same-sex marriage to be allowed. Backed by gay rights groups, they said the state's civil unions were

IOC chief Rogge still wants reassurances on Russia anti-gay law
source: The Washington Post
posted: 8/9/13
The International Olympic Committee is waiting for more clarifications from the Russian government on the anti-gay law that is overshadowing preparations for the Winter Games in Sochi, IOC President Jacques Rogge said Friday.

The law, signed by President Vladimir Putin in June, bans “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” and imposes fines on those holding gay pride rallies. It has caused a major international outcry and spawned calls for protests ahead of the Feb. 7-23 Olympics in th

Brazil Army must recognize same-sex civil union
source: SFGate/San Francisco Chronicle
posted: 8/9/13
A court in the northeastern state of Pernambuco has ordered Brazil's Army for the first time to recognize a same-sex civil union between a sergeant and his companion .

Judge Elio Siqueira said in his ruling that the couple is entitled to the same rights as heterosexual couples in terms of things such as alimony and retirement benefits because the two have been in a stable civil union for three years.

The sergeant's attorney, Laurecilia de Sa Ferraz, said Friday it was "the first time a cou

Same-sex spouses may get military benefits
source: SFGate/San Francisco Chronicle
posted: 8/8/13
Same-sex spouses of military members could get health care, housing and other benefits by the end of August under a proposal being considered by the Pentagon. But earlier plans to provide benefits to gay partners who are not married may be reversed.

A draft Defense Department memo obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press says the department instead may provide up to 10 days of leave to military personnel in same-sex relationships so they can travel to states where they can marry legally.