WA Domestic Partnership Expansion Bill Signed Into Law

by HRC Staff

WA Domestic Partnership Expansion Bill Signed Into Law

WASHINGTON - State of Washington Governor Chris Gregoire signed into law on Wednesday a Domestic Partnership Expansion bill that will provide more than 160 new rights and responsibilities to registered domestic partners under state law. The bill passed the Senate on March 4 by a 29-20 vote. It passed the House last month by a 62-32 vote.

"The Human Rights Campaign congratulates Equal Rights Washington on this important step forward and thanks Governor Gregoire and fair-minded legislators for taking action that promises real benefits for same-sex couples in Washington and their families," said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. "This new law will provide vital rights and benefits for same-sex couples and their families. For the second time in as many years, the state of Washington has helped move same-sex couples toward full equality."

A 2007 law created a domestic partner registry that provided specific rights and responsibilities to same-sex couples as well as opposite sex couples with one partner over age 62. The bill the Senate passed will expand on the 2007 law.

"The Human Rights Campaign was an important partner in our efforts to pass the Domestic Partnership Expansion bill, which provides significant protections to LGBT families while we continue the struggle for full marriage equality in Washington State," said Joshua Friedes, Advocacy Director for Equal Rights Washington.

The new law becomes effective June 12, 2008.

HRC is proud to partner with Equal Rights Washington by encouraging our members in the state to contact their elected representatives in both the House and the Senate. HRC also thanks its members in Washington for taking action to help pass this important legislation.

The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against GLBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

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