Yesterday, a Republican-led Michigan Senate committee “approved legislation aimed at blocking the offering of taxpayer-paid health insurance to domestic partners living with public employees,” the Associated Press is reporting. The Michigan state House passed the measure last month.
Democrats opposed the legislation, however, claiming that public universities have the constitutional authority to determine their own policies. Earlier this year, the Michigan Civil Service Commission voted “to allow state employees to share health care benefits with an ‘other eligible adult’” and several public entities, “representing tens of thousands of workers” are already providing “benefits for domestic partners of employees, including the State of Michigan, at least 10 public universities, at least 5 city and county governments, and at least 3 public school districts,” LGBTQ Nation notes.
In 2008, Michigan residents defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman, and the Michigan Supreme Court ruled “that same-sex partner benefits should not be allowed.” However, the court “also made clear that the ruling does not prohibit employers from offering coverage to another person — that person just couldn’t be called a ‘domestic partner.’”