Imagine being in a committed relationship with your partner (husband/wife) ..... but not having all the legal rights and responsibilities that marriage brings. Imaging not being able to qualify for medical benefits at your spouse's job. Imaging not being allowed to visit her/him in the hospital, or not being included in their medical decisions. If your partner happened to die, imagine not being allowed to receive their body. Imagine that you are unable to receive Social Security benefits should your partner pass away. Imagine not having the same legal rights that other married couples enjoy each and every day.
That is really what it's all about--being treated the same as anyone else who is married. The marriage amendment that will be on the ballot in the 2012 election will ask voters to decide if all people should have the same constitutional rights, or just some people. VP Larson reminded us of the importance of equality throughout our country's history. We have a long history of oppression, whether it's women, racial minorities, etc. And we've made progress in the fight for equality, but more is needed. That is what the Marriage Amendment is about--making sure the MN Constitution is not changed to enshrine discrimination against a particular group of people - our GLBT friends and family.
Attendees at the Monday event were able to munch on cookies, enjoy popsicles,talk to colleagues and pick up educational materials from Minnesotans United for All Families (www.mnunited.org) and our Local 151 Marriage Amendment committee. Those materials are available on this site, just click on "Marriage Amendment/GLBT Equality" in the left column. One of the people who attended the event later wrote about the connection between the proposed amendment and workplace equality in his blog: 2nd Class Minnesotans (2ndclassmn.blogspot.com/- scroll to the bottom of the page).
Stay tuned for future updates and events as we continue to work toward equality for all of our members and the defeat of the Marriage Amendment.