Legislation Extends Benefits to Same-Sex Couples Regardless of Residency
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) has cosponsored the Charlie Morgan Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act, legislation that will extend veterans benefits to same-sex military couples and dependents regardless of the state they live in. Under current law, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is unable to provide benefits to certain same-sex couples who reside in states like Michigan that do not recognize their marriage. The Charlie Morgan Act will alter the definition of marriage under Title 38 in the U.S. Code to ensure same-sex couples receive equal benefits.
“Our brave men and women put their lives on the line to protect our country, and there should be absolutely no reason why every veteran, regardless of who they love, is not given the full benefits they have earned through their service,” Senator Peters said. “I’m proud to support this legislation that guarantees our nation’s heroes and their families aren’t treated differently by the federal government, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure we right this wrong for America’s service members and their dependents.”
Peters has been a strong supporter of equal rights. He supported the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in the military and previously helped introduce the Employee Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) in the U.S. House of Representatives, which would protect employees from being fired, denied a promotion, or harassed on the job because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Peters also signed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).