Patch: Resource Page For LGBT Couples Launched

September 01, 2011

Newly married and looking for info on tax issues, travel and finances? Well then, one Brooklyn lawmaker has the website for you.

By McCarton Ackerman 

If you missed state Sen. Daniel Squadron’s symposium on Tuesday on the remaining challenges for married LGBT New Yorkers, you’re in luck.

Squadron, D-Brooklyn, has launched a resource page for LGBT couples that addresses issues including social security, health benefits, tax returns, and interstate travel and relocation.

“New York took a historic step forward with marriage equality, but LGBT New Yorkers still face a number of challenges after saying, ‘I do,’" said Squadron in a statement. “LGBT couples must have the right tools in hand as they plan for their futures. And there are ongoing challenges to equality, dignity and recognition for all New Yorkers, including for transgender individuals and couples.” 

Titled ‘I Do’: What’s Next for LGBT New Yorkers, the forum featured Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., New York Deputy Secretary for Civil Rights Alphonso David, Senate sponsor of marriage equality Tom Duane, New York City Comptroller John Liu and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, as well as several other leaders.

The symposium highlighted the obstacles and general questions for same-sex couples, including those married under New York law, that have been caused due to the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), as well as the religious exemptions included in the marriage equality bill. 

In addition, the symposium addressed the broader struggle for equality and recognition among same-sex individuals, including anti-LGBT violence and discrimination. The fight for the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA) was also highlighted, which aims to protect transgender New Yorkers who can be fired from their jobs, kicked out of their homes and denied basic services because of their gender identity and expression.

Squadron’s resource page includes links to the most commonly asked questions, social security administration tools, and resources for LGBT couples from organizations including Lambda Legal and the Empire State Pride Agenda. The page will be continually updated.

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