We may not get ENDA anytime soon. But, read Jeremy Hooper’s post on the news that Google is going to pay its same-sex employees extra to cover the taxes on their partner benefits. (Jeremy really has all the best lines.)
This is another illustration of the unequal treatment experienced by LGBT Americans. We pay more taxes for the same things. From the New York Times:
Under federal law, employer-provided health benefits for domestic partners are counted as taxable income, if the partner is not considered a dependent. The tax owed is based on the value of the partner’s coverage paid by the employer.
On average, employees with domestic partners will pay about $1,069 more a year in taxes than a married employee with the same coverage, according to a 2007 report by M. V. Lee Badgett, director of the Williams Institute, a research group that studies sexual orientation policy issues.
So Google is essentially going to cover those costs, putting same-sex couples on an even footing with heterosexual employees whose spouses and families receive health benefits.
I’m waiting for the federal government to put same-sex couples on even footing. That may be a long wait.