Guest Blogger

An Important Step for LGBT Equality in Wisconsin

Filed By Guest Blogger | June 11, 2009 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, Politics
Tags: Jim Doyle, Katie Belanger, Wisconsin

[belanger.jpgEditor's Note:Katie Belanger is the Legislative Director with Fair Wisconsin, an organization dedicated to protecting the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Wisconsin through education, advocacy, grassroots organizing and electoral work.]

Wisconsin is poised to be the second state in the Heartland to recognize gay and lesbian couples. In his February budget address, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle included limited domestic partnership protections for the state's same-sex couples in his biennial budget proposal. The proposed domestic partnerships would grant basic legal protections to committed same-sex couples, including hospital visitation, the ability to take Family Medical Leave to care for a sick or injured partner, and the ability to make end of life decisions for a domestic partner.

Wisconsin is fortunate that not only our Governor, but key leaders in our State Legislature, have come out in favor of domestic partnerships. In these tough economic times, it is truly inspiring to have a Governor and legislative leadership who take a stand alongside the LGBT community for fairness and equality.

Like so many other states, the LGBT and allied community in Wisconsin suffered a heartbreaking defeat when voters approved a constitutional amendment banning marriage and any legal status "substantially similar" to marriage in 2006. Since then, we at Fair Wisconsin have been working to educate our members, the general public, and elected officials that this harmful amendment should not and will not stop us from providing crucial protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Wisconsin. Domestic partnerships are an important step for gay and lesbian couples in Wisconsin and their enactment would be the first piece of pro-fairness legislation to pass in our state in more than 20 years.

This Wednesday, the Wisconsin State Assembly is poised to vote on the state budget. This vote will be absolutely critical to our success. We know that conservatives will move to strip these critical protections from the budget, and we are ready to beat back these attempts.

If you live in Wisconsin, or have friends or family there, we need your help today. Please join us in contacting state legislators and asking them to support this important step towards equality:

To learn more about Fair Wisconsin or stay updated on the progress of the domestic partnership protections (as well as other news!) visit us at

Recent Entries Filed under Politics:

Leave a comment

We want to know your opinion on this issue! While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

The editorial team will delete a comment that is off-topic, abusive, exceptionally incoherent, includes a slur or is soliciting and/or advertising. Repeated violations of the policy will result in revocation of your user account. Please keep in mind that this is our online home; ill-mannered house guests will be shown the door.

But still no rights for trans people almost 30 years after they were passed for gay peeps only....When are y'all coming back for us in Wisconsin?

Yeah. I think a real piece of "pro-fairness legislation" would be patching up that particular gaping hole in my state's non-discrimination laws.

Gee, didn't know nobody gave a shit about us transfolk here in Wisconsin? At least not outside of Madison and Milwaukee. Most the people here in Wisconsin are dumb as bag of hammers. I shit you not!

Most of the time I have no probs up here but every once in a while one of these Elmer's really ticks me off. Then I tell them where to stick it.

I had a real problem with peoples rights being put for a refendum vote, with the dumbass's that live here, what did ya think the outcome was going to be? Another fine example of not being able to trust the majority. Especially, when most of them are frickin idiots.

And that Juliette Appling chic that organized the opposition to gay marriage up here, geeze, she should getting together with Mitt Romney to talk about magic underwear. People here are frickin bazaar!! There logic is based on a book written in the bronz age. EVOVLE already!! Oh, that's right they don't beleive in that. Some people you just can't reach.

Anyway, I hope the vote here goes well tomorrow.
Getting get back to my beer and fried cheese now!

How's the court case going with Wisconsin's "Inmate Sex Change Prevention Act".

You know, the one where although there's been testimony by prison medics that it's cheaper to provide hormones to trans people than to deal with their suicide attempts, they're denied anyway. Done much on that recently?

Or are those crickets chirping...

Oh yes - and thanks for your efforts on behalf of GLBs. GLBTs, not so much.

Thanks for the guest post, Katie. Please keep us updated as to your progress. I'll also add that it would be great to get an update on the trans issues raised above.