Same Sex Couple Fight For Equal Rights - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Same Sex Couple Fight For Equal Rights

Posted: Updated:
BOZEMAN -

The Department of Justice announced on Monday that married same sex couples will now receive equal treatment as opposite sex couples when they file for bankruptcy, testify in court or visit family in prison.

In Montana, six same-sex couples continue to fight for legal protections which they say are not given to them under Montana's constitution.

Rich Parker and Mike Long have been together for 12 years and got married this past November.

"We have a life together. We have a mortgage, two black labs and a son in college," said Long. "We would like to have the same protections under Montana state laws that other couples can have."

Parker and Long are one of the six couples in Montana along with the American Civil Liberties Union suing the state of Montana for failing to offer legal protections to same-sex couples and their families.

"I want to make sure that the gay youth of this state feel comfortable being out there," said Parker.

Unlike opposite sex couples Parker and Long are denied state rights such as work compensation, state pensions or death benefits.

"We really believe that these committed and loving couples have a right to be able to take care of one another," said Amy Cannata, ACLU Communications Director. "We're going to do everything we can to make sure that happens here in Montana."

"Marriage is still forbidden under the Montana constitution and we're not questioning that. We're questioning the part of the Montana constitution that says everyone should be treated equally under the law," said Long.

This is not the first time the lawsuit has been filed. In December 2012, the Montana Supreme Court denied the request for domestic partnerships saying the complaint didn't specify statues that discriminate.  

A new complaint was filed in July 2013, outlining specific acts of discrimination.
This Wednesday, attorneys on both sides will discuss the facts of the case.

"Right now, it's in the discovery phase. We're still looking at sending documentation back and forth with the state," said Cannata.

Long said a trial date for the case is set in December in District court in Helena.

"It makes me feel optimistic that it will happen," said Long.

Currently, there are 18 states in the country where same-sex marriage is legal.

  • NationalMore>>

  • Creeping landslide devouring part of Wyoming town

    Creeping landslide devouring part of Wyoming town

    Saturday, April 19 2014 3:12 PM EDT2014-04-19 19:12:08 GMT
    A sudden lurch in a creeping landslide in the northwest Wyoming resort town of Jackson split a house in two and forced workers to abandon efforts to stabilize the hillside.
    No one can say when the mountainside collapsing into this Wyoming resort town will give way. But it appears increasingly likely that when it does, it's going to take a piece of Jackson with it.
  • Documents detail another delayed GM recall

    Documents detail another delayed GM recall

    Saturday, April 19 2014 2:52 PM EDT2014-04-19 18:52:09 GMT
    Government documents show that General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and warranty repair claims.
    General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and more than 30,000 warranty repair claims, according to government documents...
  • NASA's moon-orbiting robot crashes down as planned

    NASA's moon-orbiting robot crashes down as planned

    Saturday, April 19 2014 2:02 PM EDT2014-04-19 18:02:14 GMT
    NASA's small moon-orbiting spacecraft LADEE (pronounced LAH'-dee) is no more. Flight controllers confirmed early Friday that LADEE crashed into the back side of the moon.
    NASA's robotic moon explorer, LADEE, is no more.
  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • WATCH: Cell Phone Video Of Sinking Ferry Released As 270 Are Still Missing

    WATCH: Cell Phone Video Of Sinking Ferry Released As 270 Are Still Missing

    Friday, April 18 2014 4:21 PM EDT2014-04-18 20:21:35 GMT
    MOKPO, South Korea (AP) - Searchers have now put markers on the surface of the water where the South Korean ferry went down. Part of the ship had remained above the surface until today, but now the entire vessel is submerged. They're continuing the effort to find some 270 people who are missing and feared dead.
    MOKPO, South Korea (AP) - Searchers have now put markers on the surface of the water where the South Korean ferry went down. Part of the ship had remained above the surface until today, but now the entire vessel is submerged. They're continuing the effort to find some 270 people who are missing and feared dead.
  • Hotels Continue To Build In Bozeman

    Hotels Continue To Build In Bozeman

    Friday, April 18 2014 8:07 PM EDT2014-04-19 00:07:18 GMT
    The city of Bozeman could see up to five new hotels by 2015. The Comfort Suites in Bozeman is one of three new hotels built off Valley Center in the past year."Since then we have been growing and developing,"
    The city of Bozeman could see up to five new hotels by 2015.
  • UM Easter Egg Hunt Goes Green

    UM Easter Egg Hunt Goes Green

    Friday, April 18 2014 8:06 PM EDT2014-04-19 00:06:34 GMT
    With thousands of plastic eggs set to speckle the lawn at the University of Montana this weekend, a Missoula business is keeping the event green. Missoula Federal Credit Union is making recycling
    With thousands of plastic eggs set to speckle the lawn at the University of Montana this weekend, a Missoula business is keeping the event green.
  • UPDATE: Deadly Shooting In Spokane Valley; Authorities Looking For Witnesses

    UPDATE: Deadly Shooting In Spokane Valley; Authorities Looking For Witnesses

    Wednesday, February 12 2014 11:40 PM EST2014-02-13 04:40:22 GMT
    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - One man was shot and killed following a high speed pursuit that ended near the Spokane Valley Mall on Tuesday night. It started around 7:00 PM when Spokane Police received a call from a man who was in a car claiming to be unstable and threatening suicide by forcing police to shoot him. 
    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - One man was shot and killed following a high speed pursuit that ended near the Spokane Valley Mall on Tuesday night. It started around 7:00 PM when Spokane Police received a call from a man who was in a car claiming to be unstable and threatening suicide by forcing police to shoot him. 
  • Man Identified In Fatal Crash Friday Morning On Bowdish Rd.

    Man Identified In Fatal Crash Friday Morning On Bowdish Rd.

    Friday, April 18 2014 4:13 PM EDT2014-04-18 20:13:11 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The man killed in an early morning crash on Friday has been identified as 34-year-old, Alejandro E. Apodaca. Just before 12:30, Apodaca crashed his car on S. Bowdish Rd. He was traveling South on Bowdish near 17th when he lost control of his car, uprooting a tree in the front yard of a home.
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The man killed in an early morning crash on Friday has been identified as 34-year-old, Alejandro E. Apodaca. Just before 12:30, Apodaca crashed his car on S. Bowdish Rd. He was traveling South on Bowdish near 17th when he lost control of his car, uprooting a tree in the front yard of a home.
  • Forest Service Wants Ski Areas Open Longer

    Forest Service Wants Ski Areas Open Longer

    Friday, April 18 2014 8:13 PM EDT2014-04-19 00:13:32 GMT
    For the most part, the ski season is either over or winding down, but that doesn't mean the resorts have to close until next winter. Nationally, there are more than 100 ski areas on nearly 180,000
    For the most part, the ski season is either over or winding down, but that doesn't mean the resorts have to close until next winter.
  • Frontage Road Crash Victim Identified

    Frontage Road Crash Victim Identified

    Thursday, April 17 2014 1:37 PM EDT2014-04-17 17:37:02 GMT
    The Gallatin County coroner says 30-year-old Kari Friedman from Bozeman died in a crash at the intersection of Frontage and Valley Center Roads Wednesday. The Montana Highway Patrol said Friedman was turning
    The Gallatin County coroner says 30-year-old Kari Friedman from Bozeman died in a crash at the intersection of Frontage and Valley Center Roads Wednesday.
  • WARNING GRAPHIC PHOTOS: 150 Pound Bernese Mountain Dog Attacked By Two Pit Bulls

    WARNING GRAPHIC PHOTOS: 150 Pound Bernese Mountain Dog Attacked By Two Pit Bulls

    Friday, April 4 2014 5:11 PM EDT2014-04-04 21:11:26 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - KHQ received a call into our newsroom from a viewer who was very upset with the way SCRAPS has handled her dog getting attacked by two pit bulls in their own front yard. Last Friday, March 28th, her stepson let their dog, a 150-pound dog outside in the front yard when he was attacked by two pit bulls.
    SPOKANE, Wash. - KHQ received a call into our newsroom from a viewer who was very upset with the way SCRAPS has handled her dog getting attacked by two pit bulls in their own front yard. Last Friday, March 28th, her stepson let their dog, a 150-pound dog outside in the front yard when he was attacked by two pit bulls.
Powered by WorldNow

Features

  • More Features
  • Powered by WorldNow
    All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Cowles Montana Media. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.