Lambda Legal has prevailed against the antigay Alliance Defense Fund, which had been trying to strip benefits from same-sex partners of city employees in New Orleans.
Lambda Legal has prevailed at the trial court level against the antigay Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), which had filed a lawsuit in an attempt to strip benefits from same-sex partners of city employees in New Orleans. This trial court victory means domestic partner benefits and the city’s domestic partner registry are safe for now, providing important protections for same-sex couples.
Since 2003, the antigay Alliance Defense Fund has been trying to eliminate benefits for same-sex partners of city employees in New Orleans. Their lawsuit needlessly jeopardized the health and well-being of city employees and their families by threatening to take away their health insurance. Lambda Legal is taking a stand against antigay forces around the country, defending ground we’ve already gained in the fight for equality.
Who is the Alliance Defense Fund?
In 1997, the city of New Orleans extended insurance benefits to same-sex partners of city employees. In 1999, the City Council created a domestic partner registry that allows couples to make a public commitment to care for and support each other. Both policies came under attack in the ADF’s lawsuit. At the city’s request, Lambda Legal represents city employee Brian Barbieri and his partner Howard Lees, who have intervened in the lawsuit to defend their domestic partnership registration and benefits.
The city of New Orleans took it upon itself to do the right thing for its gay and lesbian employees and their families by giving them access to the same health insurance plans that its heterosexual employees and their families receive. Lambda Legal successfully argued that the city is well within its rights to do so.