HRC Blog

Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act Reintroduced in Congress

U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) today reintroduced the Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act of 2013 (MSETA), legislation that would provide lawfully-married lesbian and gay service members and veterans with equal access to critical family benefits.

Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) have introduced the same bill in the Senate.
 
MSETA would include lawfully-married lesbian and gay military spouses in the definition of “spouse” in relevant sections of the United States Code, ensuring they receive the same family benefits already provided to service members and veterans with different-sex spouses.
 
The reintroduction of this legislation follows the Pentagon’s announcement last week that it would extend some, but not all, of the benefits currently afforded to straight military personnel to lesbian and gay service members and their families over the coming months. Though a meaningful step forward, the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) still prevents gay and lesbian military families from enjoying full equality under the law.
 
Learn more about MSETA here.

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