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HRC backs proposed bill to end unequal healthcare taxation

A new bill was introduced yesterday by Senators Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Susan Collins (R-ME) that would put an end to the unequal taxation of employer-provided health insurance for domestic partners. In an unusual twist for equality-oriented legislation, the bill enjoys bipartisan backing with both Democratic LGBT advocates and Republican politicians lined up to co-sponsor the bill.

The Tax Parity for Health Plan Beneficiaries Act would remove the added tax burden placed on same-sex spouses and their families, in addition to penalties currently imposed on employers who provide equal benefits to LGBT employees.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s most extensive LGBT civil rights organization, has issued a press release applauding Schumer and Collins’ efforts in bringing the bill to the Senate floor. HRC President Joe Solmonese expressed his support for a fair and equitable tax policy, explaining that LGBT families face an additional barrier to securing affordable health insurance coverage.

In addition to the obstacles the current law imposes on same-sex partners, LGBT-friendly employers face added administrative and tax burdens for providing health coverage to domestic partners. Yet despite the payroll tax penalties and inevitable red tape involved in the process, nearly 60% of Fortune 500 companies offer health insurance to their LGBT employees as a matter of basic fairness and equality.

Some of these companies, including MetLife, Morgan Stanley, American Airlines, Nike, Dow, IBM, Microsoft, Corning and Chubb, have created a coalition and joined the HRC in speaking out in support of the bill. Solmonese recognized these and other fair employers when he noted, “Our government shouldn’t burden hardworking families, nor should it punish employers for making business decisions that are both the right thing for their employees and their bottom line.”

 



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Posted by on Jun 10, 2011. Filed under Breaking News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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