El Paso County backs away from offering DP benefits 3 weeks after city approved them

Posted on 18 Aug 2009 at 11:35am

Domestic partner benefits have been a hot issue in the Sun City of late.

Less than three weeks after the El Paso City Council voted to extend domestic partner benefits to employees, the El Paso County Commissioners Court on Monday backed away from a similar proposal.

The County Commissioners Court voted 3-2 against a plan to study the possibility of offering benefits to unmarried partners of county workers, according to The El Paso Times. And just like during recent City Council meetings, it appears the local bigots were out in force. From KFOX 14:

[Pastor] Brown, of Word Of Life Church, has battled the city, and now the county, on providing health benefits for domestic partners. He said it is not a civil rights issue.

“They don’t become more or less African-American or a woman based on nurturing or an environment, but homosexuals, they are not born that way,” Brown told KFOX.

The City Council could finalize its recently approved plan to offer DP benefits as early as next week. Equality Texas has an action alert on its Web site urging people to ask El Paso city council members to continue to support DP benefits. It’s not surprising that the city would approve the plan and the county wouldn’t, given that county commissioners have more rural, conservative constituencies. As you may or may not be aware, the city of Dallas has both a gay-inclusive nondiscrimination policy and domestic partner benefits, while Dallas County has neither.

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