chapter
9 Pages

Vermont’s Civil Union

For decades lesbian issues have been marginal to many of the larger feminist organizations. Liberal feminist activists often have been wary of identifying too closely with lesbian politics, for fear of antifeminists using the lesbian label to undermine their demands on other issues, especially on the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). Organizations such as NOW adopted civil liberties-style endorsements of rights to privacy in sexual preference and behavior choice and supported nondiscrimination laws. Typical is the resolution from the International Women’s Year Conference held in 1977: “Congress, state, and local legislatures should enact legislation to eliminate

13. public assistance benefits under state law; 14. laws relating to taxes imposed by the state or a municipality; 15. laws relating to immunity from compelled testimony and the

marital communication privilege; 16. the homestead rights of a surviving spouse and homestead prop-

erty tax allowance; 17. laws relating to loans to veterans; 18. the definition of family farmer; 19. laws relating to the making, revoking and objecting to anatom-

ical gifts by others; 20. state pay for military service; 21. application for absentee ballot; 22. family landowner rights to fish and hunt; 23. legal requirements for assignment of wages; and 24. affirmance of relationship.