News Release
For Immediate Release:  January 20, 2011
Contact:  Diane Gramley  1.814.271.9078 or 1.814.437.5355

Did City Council Consider the High Medical Costs for Those Engaged in the Homosexual Lifestyle?

(Harrisburg) —  Last night  the Allentown City Council voted to extend medical benefits to  partners of a limited number of same-sex employees – both current and retired.  The decision currently only affects members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and non-union managers and supervisors.   One must wonder why any government entity, in these tough economic times, would be adding to their cost burden.   This should also be a warning to municipalities in southeastern PA that are considering human relations ordinances as this was the avenue through which Allentown’s domestic partner benefits advanced.  The American Family Association of Pennsylvania (AFA of PA), a group that advocates for traditional marriage, posed several questions to the Allentown City Council members and asked them to consider the real dollars and cents involved with their decision.

“Council members have said the issue is about fairness and equity, not dollars and cents.  But just how much do they expect the taxpayers of Allentown to pay in extending these benefits?  How high will the city’s health insurance costs be driven when this high risk population is added to the pool?” asked Diane Gramley, President of the AFA of PA.

The AFA of PA provided each member with CDC stats and research showing  the physical dangers of engaging in homosexual sex – dangers which the City of Allentown has just voted to cover under the city’s insurance plan for their employees.  A link to Dr. John Diggs “The Health Risks of Gay Sex” was also included.

As noted in a December 27 Morning Call article, “But calculating the costs will be tricky, if not impossible. City officials can’t ask employees about their sexual preferences and whether their partners already have medical benefits.”

“Even though we are told that the decision not to vote last night to extend pension benefits to the city’s homosexual employees allowing them to name their partners as beneficiaries on their pension plans was not because of concerns for cost, one must remember the Mayor’s proposed 40% increase in the city’s earned income tax to help pay for what he called ‘a noose around the city’s neck’ – the city’s pension fund.  Will the City Counsel vote to tighten that noose around the city’s neck in the coming weeks?” questioned Gramley.

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