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Pentagon To Offer Some Benefits To Same-Sex Couples

Department of Defense

Update (2/11/2013): The Pentagon has now released its decision on which benefits will be extended to same-sex couples. See them in an NPR story here.

Original Post (2/7/2013): The Pentagon is expected as early as today to announce certain military benefits for same-sex couples, but a source in the defense department said not all benefits will be offered. 

Couples would receive access to military bases, commissaries and family service, but would not get health benefits, family housing or with-dependents housing allowances. Those benefits are specifically defined under federal law and the Defense of Marriage Act prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is expected to detail the benefits this week.

The Pentagon is reportedly working to align its rules with the 2011 repeal oft the military's "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" policy.

The Air Force Times reports that some gays in uniform have said existing military rules make it difficult for families to conduct routine activities such as picking up children from on-base school or shopping at the commissaries.

Eileen Pace is a veteran radio and print journalist with a long history of investigative and feature reporting in San Antonio and Houston, earning more than 50 awards for investigative reporting, documentaries, long-form series, features, sports stories, outstanding anchoring and best use of sound.