Del. Lawmakers to Consider Bill Legalizing Civil Unions - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Del. Lawmakers to Consider Bill Legalizing Civil Unions

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WILMINGTON, Del.- Delaware lawmakers are expected to introduce legislation in March that would legalize civil unions in the state. If passed, Delaware will join about a dozen other states that allow civil unions or domestic partnerships.

Equality Delaware, an advocacy group promoting equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Delaware residents, helped draft the legislation.

The bill will provide same sex couples with the same rights as married couples. Equality Delaware said clergy would not be forced to join gay and lesbian couples in civil unions.

Equality Delaware President Lisa Goodman said, "It's personally important because I'm a member of they gay community. I'm gay. And it's important because we have a large contingency of older gay couples who are going to start facing real problems as they start to age with inheritance issues, with pension issues and the ability to live with a partner in a nursing home."

Despite the efforts of Equality Delaware and other supporters, the bill will certainly face criticism from conservative groups. In Dover, some people there said they had mixed feelings about legalizing civil unions. But, gay rights supporters are ready for a fight.

"We think Delaware is ready for civil unions. We are confident we have a majority of public support. And we feel very good that we have a strong majority in both houses of the General Assembly," Goodman said.

 

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