The Department of Justice and the Department of Defense have enacted directives to ensure equal health, housing, tax and death benefits to same-sex spouses in the National Guard. But Texas, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Louisiana are attempting to put discriminatory roadblocks against same-sex couples.
When the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was struck down it allowed federal agencies to recognize same-sex marriages. All soldiers in the National Guard with a marriage certificate or license, can now make claims just like any other family.
But same-sex couples cannot apply for benefits at state-run offices in Texas, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Louisiana. They are discriminating against LGBT soldiers, and prohibiting them from using federal funds. Stand with organizations like the ACLU and urge Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to preserve the federal benefits of all same-sex couples and their families in the National Guard.
Photo Credit: Lucy Nicholson/Reuters
To: Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel
Texas, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Louisiana are defying the Pentagon’s directive to give federal benefits to same-sex couples. All soldiers in the National Guard should have equal rights under law to health and death benefits.
These soldiers serve our country and should be respected equally, no matter their sexual preference. I stand with organizations like the ACLU and urge Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to preserve federal benefits for all same-sex couples and their families in the National Guard.
[Your name here]
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recently declared that the nine state refusing to issue military IDs to same-sex spouses are “wrong” and are causing harmful “division among the ranks”. He went on to say that if the nine states do not ensure same-sex spouses their rights, he’s prepared to take further action.