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Military act would re-define 'spouse'
2012-07-11

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The Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act of 2012 (MSET) stands to change the definition of "spouse" in four areas of U.S. Code related to recognition, support and benefits for married service members and veterans, according to an Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) press release. SLDN Executive Director Aubrey Sarvis praised the introduction of HR 6046.

"Our nation's senior military leaders and commanders on the ground are increasingly uncomfortable with administering two classes of recognition, support and benefits for our nation's service members—one for straight service members and a different one for their gay and lesbian peers. There cannot be two classes of service members, and this legislation addresses that effectively," said Sarvis.

In a separate statement, Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said, "The Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act represents an important step forward in the ongoing work to achieve full equality in our nation's military." However, he added, "This legislation recognizes that all military families make extraordinary sacrifices and exhibit unparalleled bravery—yet not all of those families are treated with the same dignity and respect. To achieve that, we also must continue pushing for full repeal of the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act."


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