poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Decision to grant benefits to married same-sex couples upheld
Associated Press

A King County Superior Court judge has affirmed the city's right to determine employee benefits for married same-sex couples.

Judge Bruce Hilyer on Friday dismissed a lawsuit against Mayor Greg Nickels over his recognition of same-sex marriages from other states. Hilyer ruled that the executive order Nickels signed in March, directing city departments to extend benefits to employees in gay and lesbian marriages, isn't in conflict with state law and doesn't violate the city charter.

"The court's decision is a great contribution to equality and family values," Nickels said in a statement Friday.

The two out-of-state legal organizations that sued on behalf of 12 local residents said they will likely appeal.


No child support owed by lesbian
Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer

A state appellate court refused Thursday to hold members of estranged same-sex couples responsible for child support and other parental obligations on the same basis as heterosexual couples.

The decision by the Court of Appeal in Sacramento overturned a child- support order against a San Francisco woman who allegedly promised to support her partner's twins before the couple broke up. It was the latest in a series of California rulings that have rejected co-parent status for former same-sex couples and recognized only the biological or birth parent as the legal parent.

Like their judicial colleagues in past rulings, the justices said family status was strictly defined by state law and that any changes must come from the Legislature.

"Whether and in what circumstances a person in a same-sex relationship, who is not related to children born during the relationship, should have the rights or obligations of a parent are matters plainly within the realm of legislative policy,'' said Presiding Justice Arthur Scotland in the 3-0 ruling.


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