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ACLU blasts governor

Published 9:01pm Thursday, December 22, 2011

DETROIT—The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan Thursday expressed deep concern over Gov. Rick Snyder’s decision to sign a bill into law barring public employers from providing domestic partner protections to their employees.
The ACLU has vowed to challenge the constitutionality of the law on behalf of families who will lose their health protections.
House Bill 4770 passed the state House in September and the Senate earlier this month. It would prohibit any government entity from providing health care protections to domestic partners.
Snyder signed the bill Thursday and vetoed a separate bill, HB 4771, that would make domestic partner protections a forbidden subject in collective bargaining agreements.
Both bills were introduced after the legislature failed to override a Michigan Civil Service Commission decision to ratify a collective bargaining agreement that allowed certain state employees to share health care benefits with one “other eligible adult.”
Kary L. Moss, ACLU of Michigan executive director, said, “The decision to take health care benefits away from families just in time for the holidays is mean-spirited and cruel. Gov. Snyder had an opportunity to show real leadership and put an end to the political games; instead he approved an extreme policy that sets our state back, jeopardizes our economy and puts our families at risk. The bill serves no other purpose than to single out a small minority of people and deprive them of critical protections as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. We are prepared to challenge this law on behalf of Michigan families.”

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