The measure asked people to approve or reject the latest expansion of the new state law that Gov. Chris Gregoire signed in May granting same sex domestic partners all the rights of married couples. That same month conservative interests announced they would attempt to overturn the new law and enough signatures were collected enough to place R-71 on the November ballot.
The original domestic partnership law, backed by Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle, two years ago, provided inheritance rights in cases where there was no will, hospital visitation rights, the ability to authorize autopsies and organ donations. About 6,000 domestic partnership registrations have been filed since July 2007.
Some rights and responsibilities that would be extended to gay and lesbian families under the latest legislation are:
Workers' compensation coverage.
Victims' rights, including the right to receive notifications and benefits allowances. Business succession rights.
The right to use sick leave to care for a spouse.
Insurance rights, including rights under group policies, policy rights after death of spouse, conversion rights, and continuing coverage rights.
Legal process rights, such as the ability to sign certain documents, the requirement to join in certain petitions, rights to cause of action, and ability to transfer licenses without charge.
The right to wages and benefits when a spouse is injured, and to unpaid wages upon death of spouse.
The right to unemployment and disability insurance benefits disability insurance issues
The first comment notes:
Finally some good news.
And to those of you still opposing it and bitter that it lost, relax. Your precious children are safe, your marriage is unaffected, your life will go on unchanged, and the world will not come to an end.