Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Slices of Bread: Domestic Partnership Registry

It was a good day if you are a Leon County resident.

Our County Commission, by a 7-0 vote, agreed to start a countywide Domestic Partnership Registry. It will go into effect on May 1st and it means that couples, both gay and straights who decide not to get married, can pay $50 to register as Domestic Partners. The DPR will guarantee that if your partner gets sick, you can be treated like a spouse and given access to them. It also means that if your partner ends up in jail, you can visit them. And if your partner dies, no one can deny your right to make decisions with regard to the funeral and disposition of the body.

Number of civil rights guaranteed under the DPR: seven. That leaves us 1,131 civil rights short of a full loaf.

Florida is still a long ways a way from treating its LGBT citizens with the dignity that we deserve. While we give standing ovations and extended applause for the right to be with our loved ones in the hospital, the jailhouse, or at their casket, other states are galloping forward in the race to approve marriage equality.

The dominoes are falling on this matter, and the time will come when all will be afforded the same rights under the law, even in Florida. For now, we in Leon County can rejoice that our little pocket in the Sunshine State is seeing more partly sunny skies than those places that are still overcast.

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