Orange County Florida approves same-sex benefits

Orange County Florida leaders voted 6-0 to extend health and other workplace benefits to the partners and children of gay county employees. More than a dozen residents spoke in favor of the policy change. “All people deserve to be treated compassionately,” said Mayor Teresa Jacobs, who said she had to wrestle through her own beliefs as a Roman Catholic on the sanctity of marriage. “Those values of compassion, sensitivity and fairness are things we need to value.” The change gives the families of gay county workers the same life, health, dental, bereavement and other benefits that heterosexual employees receive. Several other cities and counties in Florida have already extended similar benefits to gay workers, including Orlando, Gainesville, Tallahassee, Tampa and Miami-Dade and Broward counties.

[via Orlando Sentinel]