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Michael Emanuel Rajner

Equal Benefits Ordinance Enacted in Broward County, Florida

Filed By Michael Emanuel Rajner | November 09, 2011 12:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Broward County, domestic partnership, Equal Benefits Ordinance, Equality Florida, Florida

Yesterday, Broward County, Florida sent a strong message to assure its LGBT-residents that they embrace the county's rich diversity and value all families who call South Florida home. The Broward County Board of County Commissioners voted unanimously to support an amendment to expand the county's Domestic Partnership Ordinance.

Broward Commission - 2011-11-08 14.30.40.jpgThe ordinance places Broward County's domestic partnership policies among the strongest in the country. Broward's new ordinance is Florida's first countywide Equal Benefits Ordinance (EBO), a measure that requires the county's vendors to provide domestic partners with benefits equal to those offered to spouses of married employees.

In recent years EBOs have been adopted as a state law in California, and in the cities of San Diego, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Olympia, Minneapolis, and Portland. In 2005, Miami Beach became the first city in Florida to pass such a law. Now Broward has become the first county, Pollitzer said.

According to Stratton Pollitzer, deputy director for Equality Florida:

"By enacting this ordinance, Broward County adopts one of the nation's most significant policies furthering workplace equality. Today, Broward County continues its long history of leadership in the area of human rights by delivering on the promise of equal pay for equal work. If you want to do business with Broward County, you must treat domestic partners and married employees equally."

EBO Broward Coalition.jpgThe EBO applies to companies who are in contracts of $100,000 or more with the county and who have five or more employees. If a company does not currently provide benefits to the spouses of their employees, then they are not required to provide benefits to the domestic partners of their employees.

If companies are not able to provide benefits to domestic partners, they may provide the cash equivalent to the employee and still meet the requirements of the EBO.

I am very proud to have been part of the coalition of individuals and organizations who met with county commissioners to advocate for the proposed new ordinance.

Here is a link to a video interview with the Sun-Sentinel's Brittany Wallman on the Equal Benefits Ordinance.


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Awesome--"voted unanimously". Go, Broward!

Eva, if we only had that kind of bi-partisan support from the GOP on the state and national level. Thankfully out local Republicans are fair-minded on social issues.