Sick leave benefits for domestic partners: What do you think?


The Office of Personnel Management earlier this week finalized regulations allowing federal employees — both gay and straight — to take leave to attend to their sick or deceased domestic partners. What do you think about this? Have you needed this benefit to help care for your partner? Or has your manager been willing to look the other way and give you the time you needed for your partner or your partner’s relatives?

Federal Times would like to hear from you. E-mail me at if you’d like to talk. If you’re more comfortable with speaking anonymously, that’s fine too.


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  1. This change is long overdue. I do not understand how any one with an open heart could oppose this simple change that reflects compassionate policymaking. I did want to take sick leave a few years ago to go to a medical appointment for my partner of 28 years, and my supervisor – who is a wonderful person and I think wanted to allow it – felt restrained by the policy.

  2. Nope, if you are committed to your domestic partner then get married. Sorry but I think it should have stayed the same. If you want spousal benefits then get married. I don’t see why we have to cater to every single person.

  3. I also think that the policy is long overdue. This is a matter of civil rights and equity, not moral judgement of others. By the way, I have been happily married for 30 years, so don’t marginalize me.

  4. Cliff Chandler on

    This isn’t right, I have been working since I was 14 yr. old and I am 58 now. We have hospitals and nursing homes to take care of the ill.
    I might seem cold hearted, but I do not understand why any business or the taxpayers should foot the cost of letting a person off to attend someone that the nurses and hospitals can take care of. That’s why we have insurance and we work to cover the cost of insurance.

    We give too many people free rides in this country. If the folks were married then I can see a few days off.

    It won’t be long and they will want time off for their pet hamster!

  5. There’s more than just being granted sick leave…and more benefits have come over the past year or so. Same-sex domestic partners (SSDP) of DHS (and DOS, plus some other agencies) now can enjoy the many benefits such as overseas allowances for families which include travel and housing. Let’s not forget about the children of SSDPs who can benefit from education allowances and travel too. These are great benefits for families and long over due! Now, the next step is US permanent residency for foreign national SSDPs to keep families together!

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