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Archive for Friday, January 25, 2008

Move to cut domestic registry stalls

Report finds more same-sex couples in state

January 25, 2008

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Proposed bill limits domestic registries

The fate of a proposal aimed at repealing Lawrence's domestic registry remains up in the air just as a new study shows rapid growth in the number of same-sex couples in Kansas. Enlarge video

— The fate of a legislative proposal that is aimed at repealing Lawrence's domestic registry remains up in the air, just as a new study shows rapid growth in the number of same-sex couples in Kansas.

In 2000, 3,973 same-sex couples were living in Kansas; by 2005, the number had increased to 6,663, according to research released Thursday by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law. The growth in same-sex couples in Kansas equals a 68 percent increase.

Adam Romero, a public policy fellow at the Williams Institute, said the increase is due to both general migration of same-sex couples to the Midwest and more couples feeling at ease in reporting their relationships.

He said the study based on Census data could be used by policymakers in debates on issues concerning domestic partnerships, hate crimes and employment discrimination.

"Our hope is that by providing state-specific information, we can better inform the debate within Kansas so that people know what same-sex couples look like," Romero said.

Meanwhile, state Rep. Lance Kinzer, R-Olathe, said he wants to advance his proposal - House Bill 2299 - that would prevent cities and counties from adopting domestic partnership registries.

Last year, the Lawrence City Commission established a domestic partnership registry, at the request of gay and lesbian couples who said it could help them secure health insurance benefits for their partners.

The registry allows unmarried couples - both same-sex and heterosexual - to register their domestic partnerships at City Hall.

But Kinzer said the registry violates a Kansas constitutional amendment that voters approved in 2005, recognizing marriage as only between one man and one woman. He also says that rules affecting couples and families should be uniform throughout the state. A legal opinion by Attorney General Paul Morrison, however, says the registry doesn't violate the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

During the 2007 legislative session, a House committee approved Kinzer's bill, but it never received a vote before the full House.

Currently, the bill is listed on the House calendar and could be brought up for consideration if House leaders want to do so.

"It's still my desire that we have that debate and move it through the process," Kinzer said. But Kinzer said he has received no word from House leaders on what will happen with that bill.

House Speaker Melvin Neufeld, R-Ingalls, said no decision has been made yet on whether Kinzer's bill will be debated.

Demographics of gays, lesbians in state

The study by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law provides a snapshot of information about gays and lesbians in Kansas. The study also shows 17 percent of same-sex couples in Kansas are raising nearly 1,800 children. Other findings include:

¢ An estimated 72,557 gay, lesbian and bisexual people live in Kansas.

¢ Same-sex couples were in every county with the highest percentage in Kearny County (0.71 percent of households); Jackson County, 0.68 percent; and Douglas County, 0.62 percent.

¢ Same-sex parents in Kansas have fewer financial resources to support their children than married parents. The median household income of same-sex couples with children is $50,400, or 11 percent less than that of married parents at $56,530.

The full report is available at: http://www.law.ucla.edu/williamsinstitute/publications/KansasCensusSnapshot.pdf.

Comments

toefungus 6 years, 11 months ago

I am all for a domestic registry if we can also have an illegal alien registry.

redmoonrising 6 years, 11 months ago

This is a registry, not a marriage as stated in the amendment. If I had a choice of next door neighbors, I would rather they be gay than blinded by their own prejudices. They might have something more relevant and itelligent to say,

SettingTheRecordStraight 6 years, 11 months ago

"The registry allows unmarried couples - both same-sex and heterosexual..."

Why is it "heterosexual" but not "homosexual"? Don't the homosexuals want to be called homosexual? Is it more PC to call them "same-sex"?

frazzled 6 years, 11 months ago

Dear Lance Kinzer:

Mind your own business. Thank you.

frazzled 6 years, 11 months ago

In response to b3: You are correct. Gay couples and straight couples should have the same rights and responsibilities under the law, with special treatment for neither.

Frederic Gutknecht IV 6 years, 11 months ago

Terminate the hate!~) Repugnicans must go! ...potty in the sandbox, apparently...

white_mountain 6 years, 11 months ago

A study just came out concluding that same-sex couples are just as committed as traditional couples.

This fact seems to bother those who prefer that gays continue to be labeled promiscuous and pedophilic, and makes their argument that the end of western civilization is nigh that much more difficult.

4chewnut 6 years, 11 months ago

Don't elected officials have a responsibility to actually work on real issues. This is on par with Missouri officials taking time to name Jayhawks as the official game bird.

SettingTheRecordStraight 6 years, 11 months ago

You all speak as if though homosexual households have been the societal norm for millenia, across cultures and throughout people groups. Suddenly, in your enlightened states, you want to ascribe to homosexual couples the rights and privileges which are reserved for one man and one woman.

It doesn't work that way.

You're trying to disrupt the foundation of human society, the family. Wad that up and throw it in the trash and we'll find ourselves with larger problems than your false desire for a sense of "equality."

Baille 6 years, 11 months ago

Damned Republican liberals. If they aren't sticking their noses into our bedrooms, they are consolidating power into a centralized government and irresponsibly mucking in local affairs.

DonnieDarko 6 years, 11 months ago

STRS: "You're trying to disrupt the foundation of human society, the family."

Explain that statement, genius. How does a domestic registry threaten the family? Or for that matter, how would legalizing gay marriages do the same? Are you trying to insinuate that all heterosexual men will now suddenly turn gay with this newfound freedom, and families will cease to be?

STRS: "It doesn't work that way." Because you say so? Funny.

wekan 6 years, 11 months ago

This week's "Profiles in Douchebaggery" will certainly feature Mr. Kinzer.

What kind of man rolls out of bed in the morning and motivates himself by crusading against people he doesn't even know?

Larry Bauerle 6 years, 11 months ago

Meanwhile the real issues continue to be ignored.

yankeelady 6 years, 11 months ago

It would be nice if the legislature could try to stay out of our bedrooms. There must be something constructive they can do with their time, healthcare and environmental issues come to mind.

jumpin_catfish 6 years, 11 months ago

redmoonrising said: ..... If I had a choice of next door neighbors, I would rather they be gay than blinded by their own prejudices. They might have something more relevant and itelligent to say,

So are gays less likely to be blinded by their own prejudices. Does gayness make a person more enlightened or a "better" human being? Is it wrong to be blindly prejudice toward lets say stupidity, I think not. From what I've seen and heard gays are quite blind in their prejudice toward religious fundamentalist but so am I. People are pretty much the same no matter how they roll in the sack.

redmoonrising 6 years, 11 months ago

jumpin_catfish, the key word being "than."

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