University Of Tennessee Denies Domestic Partner Benefits

Administrators at the University of Tennessee announced to faculty this week that they could not support any benefits for the unmarried same-sex partners of employees. The benefits sought included education credits, leave to care for partners and their children, and family health insurance coverage. Chancellor Jimmy Cheek and Agriculture Chancellor Larry Arrington claimed that such benefits would be “inconsistent with the public policy of our state outlined in constitutional and statutory provisions.” Tennessee’s marriage inequality amendment, passed in 2006, places limits on which couples can be recognized as married, but places no explicit limits on other partnerships.