Wednesday, April 16, 2014

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SFMS/CMA Joins Amicus Briefs Challenging Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act

Today, the SFMS and CMA joined the AMA and dozens of other health care organizations in filing an amicus brief with the US Supreme Court challenging California’s Proposition 8, which denies state recognition of same-sex marriages. Tomorrow, a similar brief will be submitted challenging the Defense of Marriage Act, which denies benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.

“CMA strongly supports efforts to reduce health care disparities among members of same sex households, including measures to afford such households equal rights and privileges to health care, health insurance and survivor benefits,” said CMA President Paul Phinney, MD. “We also recognize that denying civil marriage contributes to worse health outcomes for gay and lesbian individuals, couples and their families.”

The brief states that the listed Amici—which includes leading associations of psychological, psychiatric, medical and social work professionalshave sought to present an accurate and responsible summary of the current scientific and professional knowledge concerning sexual orientation and families relevant to this case.

These briefs were filed based on policy passed at last year’s House of Delegates:

Date Adopted: 10/15/2012
Status: Adopted

  • Resolved #1 - That CMA support efforts to reduce health care disparities among members of same-sex households including minor children
  • Resolved #2 - That CMA support measures providing same-sex households with the same rights and privileges to health care, health insurance, and survivor benefits afforded to opposite-sex households
  • Resolved #3 - That CMA recognize that denying civil marriage contributes to poorer health outcomes for gay and lesbian individuals, couples and their families.

For a full copy of the Perry brief, please click here


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