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Cuomo Espa Letter

Cuomo Espa Letter

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Published by Azi Paybarah

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Published by: Azi Paybarah on Nov 05, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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11/05/2010

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October 3, 2010 Ross D. LeviExecutive Director Empire State Pride AgendaOne Commerce Plaza99 Washington Avenue, Suite 805Albany, NY 12260 Dear Mr. Levi: I write to commend the Empire State Pride Agenda for being a visionary civil rights leader, andforging a path for equality for all New Yorkers, and I pledge my continued commitment to work withyou in achieving equality for gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens.As you know all too well, discrimination still exists in society and we must fight it in every form.That's one of the central reasons why I'm running for Governor of New York. As Attorney General, my office has confronted injustice head on in a variety of ways. Wesuccessfully led the effort to insure validly executed out-of-state marriages between same-sexcouples are recognized in New York. We have investigated and prosecuted gender identitydiscrimination. And we have shut down discriminatory adoption services. For example, we: Successfully led the fight to protect the legal recognition of valid marriages between same-sex couples. My office defended the recognition of valid out-of-state marriages between same-sexcouples in a series of legal challenges that were filed against public officials for recognizing thosemarriages. The cases were ultimately argued before the highest court in New York, the Court of Appeals, which affirmed that out-of-state marriages between same-sex couples should berecognized in the State. Investigated and prosecuted gender identity discrimination. We reached an agreement with anational clothing retailer that operates approximately 1,000 stores across the United States,requiring the company to take important steps to ensure that employees and job applicants are nottreated differently because of their gender expression or identity. The agreement requires theadoption and implementation of anti-discrimination policies and procedures in their New York storesto ensure that all job applicants and employees are provided with equal opportunities regardless of gender identity and expression, train staff on the prohibition against gender identity and expressiondiscrimination, retain an independent auditor to monitor future compliance with the agreement; andpay $70,000 to New York State to resolve the investigation. Shut down discriminatory adoption services in New York. My office successfully bannedAdoption Media L.L.C. and Adoption Profiles, L.L.C, both nationwide adoption service providers,from doing business in New York State as a result of an investigation into the companies'discriminatory policies, procedures and practices. The companies, which tout themselves asservicing 1.5 million people per month, intentionally excluded individuals from adopting childrenbased on marital status and sexual orientation. As a result of our action, the companies can nolonger conduct business in the State. Successfully secured health insurance coverage for same-sex and common law spousesand their dependents. My office, along with local advocates, successfully compelled OtsegoCounty to reverse its prior decision to exclude same-sex couples and common law spouses andtheir dependents from its health care plan. The County initially contended that the exclusion of 

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