Canadian Queers Get Back Benefits

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The Canadian Supreme Court once again proved its liberal chops when it ruled that the government must grant gay couples survivor benefits. Though lawyers hoped the judges would request a pay off for back benefits from1985, the Court has ruled that the government can only be held accountable for cases dating back to 2000. The Court wrote:

Just as ignorance of the law is no excuse for an individual who breaks the law, ignorance of the Constitution is no excuse for governments. But where a judicial ruling changes the existing law or creates new law, it may, under certain conditions, be inappropriate to hold the government retroactively liable.

The government will now pay approximately $50-75 million in back payments to nearly 1,000 gay widows/widowers. Activists insist it’s not about the money, but about civil rights. While that’s certainly true, we’d love a little pay off. Too bad we’re not Canadian. And don’t have a dead lover. Or a live lover, for that matter. Tear, tear…