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Survey tackles issues facing gay troops and their families

WASHINGTON – Officials from the Military Partners and Families Coalition are conducting an online survey to see how the repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law has affected same-sex partners and what challenges they still face.

The survey, available at www.milpfc.org/survey, is also designed to highlight those families’ continuing problems accessing military benefits. Same-sex military partners are not eligible for housing stipends, Tricare coverage and a host of other benefits open to straight military couples.

In a statement, MPFC president Ariana Bostian‐Kentes said the data collection is important because “we are members of a community that for many years has been hidden and not heard from.” The research is being conducted in part thanks to an award from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, and the survey will remain open for the next two weeks.

The work comes a little more than a month before the two-day summit by gay rights advocates on military family issues. That conference will include workshops on the rights of same-sex military couples and lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill.

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