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SPSSI member joins Sen. Feinstein in calling for repeal of DOMA

At a press conference today, Senator Feinstein (D-CA) was joined by three same-sex married couples from the Courage Campaign, among them SPSSI member, Kathleen Cumiskey, Professor of Psychology at the College of Staten Island with her wife, Robin Garber.

The conference launched S.598, The Respect for Marriage Act, which aims to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and so provide full federal benefits to same sex married couples no matter which state they reside in. Standing alongside the Senator, Kathleen and Robin, reiterated the former's call to end the discriminatory legislation saying, "Now is the time to repeal DOMA."

As Senator Feinstein said in her remarks, this has been a landmark year for equality regarding marriage and sexual orientation. Tomorrow will see Congresses first hearing ever on DOMA. This is a real opportunity for change on a law which stands alone as the only U.S. law relating family law that has been passed at the federal level.

According to the Williams Institute at UCLA there are between 50,000 and 80,000 same sex married couples in the U.S. Currently, because of DOMA, these couples can’t take advantage of federal protection so can’t, for example, file joint federal income tax forms, take unpaid leave, or apply for protections on estate tax.

The hearing, The Respect for Marriage Act: Assessing the Impact of DOMA on American Families, will take place tomorrow at 10am. A live webcast can be found here.

Alex Ingrams
SPSSI Policy Coordinator


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