A bill to extend civil union rights to same-sex couples in Delaware is making its way through the state legislature, triggering an outcry from “pro-family” groups there.
SB 30 would give gay and lesbian couples access to the responsibilities and rights of marriage; partners in a civil union would be included wherever terms like “dependent,” “next of kin” and “family” are used in Delaware regulations, codes and court decisions. If passed, Delaware would also recognize civil unions performed in other states.
The measure passed out of committee and is expected to be voted on Thursday by the full Senate. It would then go to the House. Advocates for the bill are asking supporters to help fill the Senate gallery beginning at 1 p.m. Thursday. The debate and vote are expected after 2 p.m.
Opponents, meanwhile, are calling the bill a “huge threat.” Delaware Family Policy Council sent an e-mail alert urging its members to attend “Defend Marriage Day” on Wednesday and Thursday at Legislative Hall.