another email, but wanted to get these out.
First, an open letter from Governor Granholm in response
to yesterday’s news reports. Also included is
one from the University of Michigan’s Vice President
for Student Affairs.
Again, just passing along information although I can’t
help but wonder why our “leaders” were intentionally
silent on this issue helping to create the current situation.
The leadership we needed was missing…especially
from ‘the party of civil rights’ to educate
and inform. (And the resolution for education on Proposal
2 we fought for was included in the MDP 2004 platform
resolutions package, so our Governor should have represented
that resolution fervently.) An attempt to educate voters
on the differences between civil and religious marriage
alone could have helped immensely. It was clear that
there existed the very strong potential that Michigan
families would LOSE insurance with the passage of this
amendment. As we know now, this could well be the outcome.
Not to have fought to avoid this situation seems an
utter embarrassment, hypocritical and contradictory
to the MDP platform. I want to be hopeful, but politicians
have made it challenging for me.
Thanks again for everything you do,
P.S. Thank you Kathleen!
open letter from Governor Granholm
I am writing today to clarify confusion caused by a series
of inaccurate news headlines.
Yesterday’s news carried stories claiming that I
removed domestic partner benefits from a contract between
the state and the United Auto Workers. The implication
that my administration is backing away from these benefits
is off base; the assertion that we have “removed”
these benefits is just plain wrong.
First, my position on this issue has not changed. I continue
to support domestic partner benefits. In fact, one of
the very reasons I opposed Proposal 2 here in Michigan
was because I feared that its passage had the potential
to take away those benefits – benefits that have
been recognized by Fortune 500 companies as critical tools
for attracting and retaining a world-class workforce.
Second, we continue to have an agreement with the UAW
and other state employee unions to move forward with domestic
partner benefits if they are allowed by law. However,
with the passage of Proposal 2 in Michigan, a legal cloud
now surrounds the question of whether the state can move
forward. In order to enhance the likelihood of ultimate
approval of these benefits, the Office of State Employer
and the UAW reached an agreement not to move forward until
the legal uncertainty surrounding this issue is resolved.
Since these new benefits were not scheduled to take effect
until October 1, 2005, we look forward to resolution of
this issue so that these benefits can be implemented as
planned this coming October. Let me be clear – if
and when a court finds these benefits lawful, we will
move forward with their implementation.
The UAW has been equally strong in responding to the inaccuracies
of yesterday’s news. I hope you’ll visit their
Website at http://www.hrcactioncenter.org/ct/U11Mntn1EBVc/http://www.uawlocal6000.org/
for additional information.
I regret the pain that these inaccurate news stories have
caused and am especially disappointed that it comes on
the heels of an election outcome that many of us felt
so strongly about. I appreciate that so many friends have
taken the time to contact my office to voice support for
these benefits and to seek clarification on the status
of this issue. I hope you will continue to keep in close
contact in the future.
Jennifer M. Granholm
‘U’ will continue its commitment to support
the LGBT community
The Michigan Daily
December 3, 2004
Letter to the Editor
By E. Royster Harper, Vice President for Student Affairs,
University of Michigan