Update 10:25 a.m. 9/30/09: The City Council unanimously approved the domestic partner benefit Tuesday night without debate.

Evanston aldermen are scheduled to vote tonight on a resolution to extend health insurance coverage to domestic partners of city workers.

Currently the city provides health coverage to spouses and dependent children of employees but not to same-sex domestic partners.

The human resources department and City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz are recommending the change.

A staff memo makes no estimate of the cost to the city of providing the added benefits, but says that at least four communities in Illinois — including Chicago, Des Plaines, Carpentersville and Wilmette — have extended their health insurance coverage to domestic partners.


Update 10:25 a.m. 9/30/09: The City Council unanimously approved the domestic partner benefit Tuesday night without debate.

Evanston aldermen are scheduled to vote tonight on a resolution to extend health insurance coverage to domestic partners of city workers.

Currently the city provides health coverage to spouses and dependent children of employees but not to same-sex domestic partners.

The human resources department and City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz are recommending the change.

A staff memo makes no estimate of the cost to the city of providing the added benefits, but says that at least four communities in Illinois — including Chicago, Des Plaines, Carpentersville and Wilmette — have extended their health insurance coverage to domestic partners.

Under the plan, an employee seeking the benefit and the employee’s partner would have to sign an affidavit affirming their relationship and provide documentation such as a joint property lease or deed, a joint bank account or shared bills for household expenses like utilities.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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3 Comments

  1. Consent Agenda… Horsefeathers
    I was surprised when the issue of extending health care insurance benefits to partners of City employees was on the consent agenda Wednesday evening. I thought that it was deserving of some debate or at least some explanation of the contours of the affidavit that is required for eligibility. It passed 9-0 with nary a peep!

    Would a male friend of a male City worker be covered if he helped pay the rent and swore that he was in a “committed” relationship? And why pray tell is this largesse offered only to same sex partners? Cannot the same kind of commitment be found in the heterosexual world?

    I would support the Council’s action were it to predicate coverage on a legally demonstrated commitment rather than a mere assertion and a check stub.

    I know that Illinois does not now allow same sex marriage or civil union although I believe in time that it will. It is clearly the right thing to do, meanwhile Iowa awaits, and there is no residency requirement. Stuart Opdycke

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