Orange County repeals benefits for unmarried gay couples

A domestic partner benefits program for Orange County employees who are in unmarried gay relationships will be repealed in 2016.

A domestic partner benefits program for Orange County employees who are in unmarried gay relationships will be repealed in 2016.

A domestic partner benefits program for Orange County employees who are in unmarried gay relationships will be repealed in 2016.

A domestic partner benefits program for Orange County employees who are in unmarried gay relationships will be repealed in 2016.

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Orange County’s government is ending domestic-partner benefits for unmarried same sex couples now that gay marriage is legal.

County commissioners on Tuesday repealed the domestic partner benefits program for Orange County employees who are in unmarried gay relationships.

The repeal takes effect at the start of next year. Eleven county employees use the program, and they will continue to have medical coverage until the end of next year.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last June that same-sex couples have a right to marry.

Officials with the gay civil rights group Equality Florida say Orange County should expand its domestic partner program to unmarried heterosexual couples rather than repeal it for unmarried gay couples. They say Orange County, home to Orlando, will be at a competitive disadvantage compared to other counties.

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