Report of the University Senate Equal Opportunity Committee
October 17, 2001
REVISED 11/29/01 -- Proposed Change in wording in "Therefore" clause only.

Subject:  Equal Marriage Resolution
Introduction:  The University Senate has previously passed resolutions urging the administration to offer equal health coverage to same-sex partners of its faculty and staff who cannot legally marry.  This, of course, raises the broader issue of extending the freedom to marry to same-sex couples in New Jersey.  The U.S. Census reported over 16,000 such couples living in New Jersey as of April, 2000.  Denial of access to civil marriage, with its attendant legal protections and social support, causes real harm to real families throughout the state, as well as at Rutgers.

The Equal Opportunity Committee therefore suggests that the following resolution be passed by the University Senate:


Whereas, Rutgers the State University of New Jersey has a clear interest in supporting civil rights of all people and because marriage is a basic human right and an individual personal choice; and,

Whereas, diversity is valued and cherished in our University community; and,

Whereas, injustice, bigotry, and intolerance must always be challenged and should never be caused by the State; and,

Whereas, lesbian and gay employees of Rutgers The State University of New Jersey are denied equal health coverage for their life partners because the State of New Jersey refuses to recognize and value their relationships on a par with those of heterosexual spouses;

Therefore, Be It Resolved that the University Senate advises the administration to encourage the State of New Jersey to end discrimination in marriage, allowing same-gender couples who choose to marry to share fully and equally in the rights, responsibilities, and commitment of civil marriage.

Equal Opportunity Committee:
Saniefard, Liza, Rutgers (S), Co-Chair - Executive Committee Liaison
Wadia, Pheroze, NFAS (F), Co-Chair
Hawkesworth, Mary, FAS-NB (F)
Krueckeberg, Donald, EJBSPP (F)
Lehman, Richard, Engineering (F)
Markowitz, Norman, Livingston (F)
Marsh, Margaret, CFAS Dean (A)
Mills, Brian, Law-Camden (S)
Redd, Jason, Graduate Student BOT Representative (nonsenator)
Ros, Alex, Cook (S)
Schlegel, James, UC-N (F)
Strom, Peter, GS-NB (F)