Late last night, the day of the Supreme Court’s decision to not hear same-sex marriage arguments, VCU’s President Michael Rao sent out an email blast to all students and faculty, as well as employees of the MCV campus, announcing plans for the college to move forward with same-sex spouse benefits.
While there aren’t any details yet, we’ll let folks know when that information becomes available. It seems action from the Governors mansion needs to come first, but we’ve reached out and hope to have answers about benefits in the coming days.
Below is a copy of the email sent out at 10:03 PM last night, signed by Rao and other administration members.
To the VCU and VCU Health System Community: With the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic decision today to effectively allow same sex marriages to be legally recognized, Virginia Commonwealth University and the VCU Health System will move as quickly as possible to evaluate the benefits currently offered to eligible spouses so that we may also provide a similar package to same-sex spouses. The governor announced in a statement that state government is proceeding to bring all of its policies and practices into compliance so that marriages between same-sex partners can receive the “full faith and credit they deserve.” We are awaiting guidance from the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management on how the benefits will be implemented at the university, and will provide that information to you as soon as we receive it. On this important day, we also are announcing our intention to expand VCU’s non-discrimination statement to include gender identity. We will ask the Board of Visitors at its next meeting to approve the following statement:
Activities of the university are designed to promote the continuing policy of providing equal opportunity for employment and education and access to all programs and services without regard to race, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation, veterans’ status, or disability. Diversity in all of its dimensions is integral to who we are at VCU. It is part of our fabric. This is a great day to celebrate our commitment to diversity and make it even stronger. Sincerely, Michael Rao President, VCU and the VCU Health System Sheldon Retchin Senior Vice President, VCU Health Sciences and CEO, VCU Health System