Will staff and students at the University of Michigan take flight if a bill to repeal domestic partner benefits in the state passes? Many have said they'll be gone in a heartbeat.
...Domestic partner benefits for state employees --including staff at Michigan's 15 public universities-- are in jeopardy due to a bill that seeks to save approximately $8 million a year by eliminating the benefits. House bill 4770 was approved by the Michigan House of Representatives in September in a 64-44 vote and is currently under consideration by the state senate.
U-M Latin professor Sara Ahbel-Rappe said that if bill 4770 passes there will likely be a large exodus of professors who leave the university.
"It's a total slap in the face. It tells me that I don't deserve the same consideration" as heterosexual couples, she said. "People will leave."
U-M officials are also concerned about the bill's effects. Nearly all of U-M's competitors offer benefits to same-sex partners. So do most Fortune 500 companies.
Indiana's proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage and civil unions could also outlaw domestic partner benefits as many experts have testified. I know several professors and other highly skilled workers who have already started moving out of state to friendlier areas of the nation.
Hell, we packed up the family and moved to Washington, DC. I did an interview with Indianapolis Monthly today on the same subject. Regular folks in the Midwest are noticing this trend even if the politicos still toadying up to the religious right haven't.