Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –
I still need your help again to fix the language on California EDD Form DE1-HW. I wrote to you in July 2007 complaining about the checkbox for HUS/WIFE. As members of a California Registered Domestic Partnership trying to hire a nanny, we were quite alienated by this clear state preference for man-on-woman marriages in contrast to the letter and intent of the law that you signed in 2000 authorizing our partnership (and our Constitutional bans on discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation.)
At the time you referred us to Mr. Robert Affleck, Deputy Director, Tax Branch, who referred us to Mr. Stan Adge, Tax Administrator, Taxpayer Advocate’s Office. Through ensuing conversations with Mr. Adge, he made it clear that this issue would be considered for the “next revision of the form.” Then he left the department, Ms. Leslie Weiss took over his job, and Ms. Michelle Mosley took over the mantle to fix this form.
According to verbal conversations with Ms. Mosley, “the form has been revised” and is “awaiting internal review” before being released to the Web site. But I have been unable to secure written confirmation if and when this will happen, and nobody in my community has had an opportunity to review the revised form to see if it complies with our need for equal treatment under the law.
Above all, this slow response and obscured process has made me feel as though this critical change to comply with an eight-year-old law is not a priority within EDD as it is within our community. I fear that the process has been derailed, the outcome will further alienate my family, and the result will please no one. This should be an emergency change to comply with state law, not a “suggestion” to be “considered with the next revision.”
Would you “work your magic” to get EDD to take this seriously? I don’t have anybody else to turn to to make sure that as long as lesbian and gay couples are being treated separately in California, they are at least treated equally.