Washington, D.C. – The Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee approved legislation today providing domestic partnership benefits to Federal employees.  Duties and obligations, such as anti-nepotism rules, that apply to married Federal employees would be extended to those in domestic partnerships as well.  Senator Akaka is a co-sponsor of Chairman Joseph I. Lieberman’s Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act of 2012 (S. 1910)

“I am proud, once again, to support and cosponsor this very important legislation, the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act of 2012,” said Akaka.  “A large number of private and public employers – including my home state of Hawai’i – already provide domestic partner benefits to employees. Whether or not you believe that same-sex marriage should be legally recognized, we should all be able to agree that all Americans should be granted the same rights and benefits, and be held to the same duties and obligations.  Currently, Federal employees in domestic partnerships are denied important benefits that Federal employees’ spouses may receive.  We must not ask our dedicated Federal employees to sacrifice the needs of their families and loved ones in order to serve their country.”

S. 1910 would permit Federal employees’ domestic partners to receive the same benefits that Federal employees’ spouses may receive, including health, group life, and long-term care insurance; retirement and disability; family, medical, and emergency leave; workers’ compensation; death, disability, and similar benefits; and relocation, travel, and related expenses.

Senator Akaka is Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs’ Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management, the Federal Workforce, and the District of Columbia.