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A Selection Of Your Comments
February 2003

   
January 2003 December 2002

 

February 9, 2003

Hello, I'm from the United States, Georgia, and am closely watching the equal marriage debate in Canada and the sham of a commission that has been set up.

I just wanted to pass along the url's for a very talented lesbian singer from Victoria, BC, I listen to her all the time, her songs play on the local radio down here, and I listen to her on the Internet and her Cd's, I'm a big fan. She sings openly about her love, her partner, her pain and healings. She is very dismayed with the Canadian governments choices and handling of the marriage case, wanting the choice to marry herself. I find her words reflect my situation and feelings, she and her words are very inspiring and encouraging to me, she gives me strength, I know she's been there.

I think what you are doing is terrific, other countries are watching, you are not alone up there and that there are some very talented people in your country getting the word out about the pain, suffering and damage to the spirit that the Canadian Governments position on marriage is causing and that there are many who know what it is like to have been exiled to spiritual Limboland by their own family and country. Keep up the good work!

Blessings,

Barbie from the south

www.n-a-n-c-e.com

www.angelfire.com/stars4/nance

Barbie, thanks for your kind words of support for our effort to end marriage discrimination. And thanks for introducing us to Nance - we will explore further. We hope the work we are doing in Canada will one day make a difference for our brothers and sisters in the U.S.


February 11, 2003

Contact the author by email.I am writing a book (to be published by Fernwood Books in Halifax later this year) about the end-of-life decisions made by same-sex partners. I am particularly interested in knowing whether such decisions have been made and, if so, whether (and how) they have been affected by the new registered domestic partnership (RDP) legislation. Theoretically, with the exception of the right to marry, this legislation gives us the same rights and obligations as those held by common-law couples. I am conducting a series of focus groups and surveys aimed at finding out what arrangements our community members have made for end-of-life decisions, and I thank you for your input.

Jeanette A. Auger
36 Pleasant Street
Wolfville, NS
B4P IM7
Tel: (902) 542-4234
E-mail: jeanetteaauger@ns.sympatico.ca

A copy of the survey is available from Jeanette at the above email address or print off the following and respond directily to Jeannette:

Your responses will remain confidential.

Name(s)

Age(s)

Are you in a same-sex relationship?
Yes No N/A

If so, for how long?

Have you officially registered your relationship (RDP)?
Yes No N/A

If so, why? If not, why not?

Do you have any of the following (and when did you acquire it)?

Will
Yes
No
N/A
Living Will
Yes
No
N/A
Medical directive
Yes
No
N/A
Power of attorney
Yes
No
N/A
Life insurance
Yes
No
N/A
Joint accounts
Yes
No
N/A
Joint ownership of property
Yes
No
N/A

Why did you decide to obtain or not to obtain the above, and why?

As a couple have you discussed the following (use same choices as in the above box):

Medical treatment decisions?
Funeral/cremation/burial wishes?
Services regarding the above?
Where you want to die (at home, in a hospital, palliative care unit, hospice, rest home, other)?
Organ donations?
Estate planning and investments?
If you have children have you appointed your partner as legal guardian should you predecease her/him?
If not, why not?
What factors caused you to have the above discussions?
And at approximately what point in your relationship did they occur?
Have you heard or read about other lesbians and gay men having difficulties with any of the above after the death of a partner?
If so, what happened?
Do you think it is important for same-sex couples to make end-of-life decisions?
If so, why?
If not, why not?
Is there anything that you would add to this questionnaire or that you think should be included in the book?
If so, what?

Thank you for participating in this research.


February 14, 2003

Hello,

I am hoping that you can help me find an English translation of the actual laws of other countries which allow same-sex marriage. All I have been finding are news reports. This is for a law student project of mine.

Thanks,

Jerry Friedman
Los Angeles

We recommend you visit the sites of our international supporters and contact them for further info. We invite readers to refer Jerry to appropriate contacts or web sites.


February 18, 2003

Dear Joe and Kevin:

I've just found your site on the web and my partner and I would like to congratulate you both for the wonderful work you're doing in bringing the importance of same-sex marriage before the public in such a deeply personal manner. We've both been heartened by your willingness to fight for this issue in the face of so much hostility from so many sources. It takes true courage to do what you've done; may God bless you as you continue to challenge the heterosexism that is still so prevalent in our country.

I'm writing because of a concern I have which I'm hoping you may be able to help me with. My partner and I currently reside in Nova Scotia, but are planning to move in a matter of months to Vancouver, B.C. We're presently registered in the province of Nova Scotia as a same-sex domestic partnership. This is very important to us; even though we realize it is not quite the same as marriage, it does give us certain legal rights which we would not otherwise enjoy. For example, my partner has a heart condition; when he was taken to the Emergency unit of the local hospital a few years ago, I was not permitted to have any information on his condition or any input into his care. Since registering as a domestic partnership, I now have the legal right of access to him should he ever require this kind of medical intervention again (which he very well may).

However, I understand that same-sex partnerships are not registered as such in B.C., and I'm wondering if the province of British Columbia has any legislation at all similar to what Nova Scotia has. If it has absolutely nothing to cover us, would it be advisable for us to acquire Power of Attorney to cover such emergencies as I've described above?

Are either of you knowledgeable in this area? If not, is it possible to refer my query to someone who is? I've tried e-mailing a couple of lesbigay groups in Vancouver with this question, but despite repeated attempts, I've never received a reply from any of them. I haven't been able to find much on B.C. gay websites about this issue, and we're wondering whether we ought to go ahead with our planned move or relocate to Quebec instead!

Any help or advice you may be able to offer us would be *greatly* appreciated.

Sincerely,

A.

It is our understanding that your registered parternship would not be recognized in B.C. Instead, you would have to take the extra legal steps you have referred to (power of attorney). Common-law status varies from province to province, and we don't recommend that as a basis for protection in emergencies (hospitals).

Of course, Link to Bruce E. Walker Law OfficeQuebec has shown they'd would welcome your relationship to the full extent allowed by the federal government. We know of couples that have left the maritimes to live in Quebec because of the province's acceptance of LGBT people. We have forwarded your note to the Bruce E. Walker Law Office: the good people who provide professional advice to such enquiries.

Congratulations on your own efforts to exercise your rights to the limits allowed (RDPs in Nova Scotia). Please continue to push for equal recognition by writing to your new members of parliament (provincially and federally). Share your stories in your own words and voice.


Feb. 23, 2003

I really am interested in immigration issues. I live in a muslim country where such matters (living openly as a gay or lesbian person) end up in death penalty. There is no possibility for me to live the way i want there. The thing is that the one that I want to live with is an American and I don't know how that might work. If you are a lawyer or know one already that would know what it takes please help me in this matter. I have waited for so long and i am so afraid because the probability of me seeing her again is close to the lowest level because of the political circumstances in the world.

I would be so thankful for any guidelines.

Sincerely
p.b.

You might consider immigrating to Canada. The Government of Canada web-site is very helpful. Follow the links to Citizenship and Immigration and read through the information thLink to Bruce E. Walker Law Officeere. Alternatively you might go to the Canadian embassy in your present country. It might be easier for you to immigrate to Canada than the United States. Once you get here to Canada it would be simple for you to see her again often. She might also consider immigrating to Canada where you would find our laws help in building a relationship. If you have more questions please get in touch with me (Bruce Walker at Bruce E Walker Law Office).


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