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November 29, 2007

Study Sexual Orientation and the Law in Amsterdam

This post is directed to law students, but please spread the word:

Study "International Perspectives on LGBT Rights at the University of Amsterdam" this summer.This program is co-sponsored by the Williams Institute & Whittier Law School.

Students can earn up to 6 units of law school credit through this ABA approved program.

The faculty involved in the project (as copied directly from the Williams Project announcement) include:

▪  Matt Coles, Director of ACLU’s Lesbian and Gay Rights Project
▪  Jenny Pizer, West Coast Legal Director, Lambda Legal
▪  Professor Holning Lau, Hofstra Law School
▪  Professor Elizabeth Glazer, Hofstra Law School
▪  Brad Sears, Executive Director of the Williams Institute
▪  Professor Russell Robinson, UCLA School of Law
▪  Professor Paula Ettelbrick, Executive Director, International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission
▪  Professor Jon Heilman, Whittier Law School
▪  Professor David Kaye, Whittier Law School
▪  Professor Judith Daar, Whittier Law School
▪  Professor Seval Yildirim, Whittier Law School

"For additional information regarding the program, students should email Professor Heilman at jheilman@law.whittier.edu or visit Whittier Law School ’s web site at www.law.whittier.edu or click here for updated information by early 2008."

November 29, 2007 in Other | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 28, 2007

College Insures Pets, Not Partners!

Palm Beach Community College offers qualifying employees discount group medical insurance for their pets.  See PalmBeachPost Article here.  This is a nice benefit--I have three cats myself and I certainly could use some discount pet insurance. 

However, the same school does not provide domestic partner coverage.  So, in other words, if you are gay, you can insure Fluffy but not your life companion.  Great!

Of course, only two public colleges currently provide domestic partner benefits in Florida (Univ. of Florida and Florida International Univ.), however, how many colleges provide pet benefits?

In fact, permitting any employee (gay or straight) to cover a domestic partner on his or her insurance would not cost the college a dime, according to the PalmBeachPostArticle, as the college only pays premiums for the employee his or herself (okay, it may cost a dime, as indicated by an earlier article written about the University of Florida's plan, which costs about $500,000 to 1 million).

But what does this have to do with the law, you ask?  Well, Florida legislators have unsuccessfully introduced bills in the past to prohibit the use of state funds for domestic partner benefits.  Also, many counties in Florida have passed laws granting domestic partner benefits to state employees.

Now, I love my three cats, I really do.  But, there is no comparison between the health of my pet and the health of my  partner.  If both my cat and my spouse became sick on the very same day and I only had time to rush one of them to the doctor--guess who it would be?  Sorry Fluffy--you'll have to wait.


November 28, 2007 in Employment Discrimination | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 26, 2007

Hate Crimes Rose by about 8% in 2006

"A total of 7,722 incidents and 9,080 [hate crime] offenses were reported by participating agencies in 2006[,]" the FBI reports in its most recent compilation of hate crime statistics. 

These statistics are very powerful tools of persuasion in light of the Hate Crimes Act, which is currently pending in the US Senate (passed by the US House in May, 2007).

As law officers and officials shed more light on the frequency of hate crimes in the United States, perhaps the pending Act will gain more support in the Senate.

November 26, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack