Metro Weekly

PEPCO adopts equal benefits for domestic partners

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliances praises Mid-Atlantic power company

Councilmember Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3) and the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA) applauded the Potomac Electric Power Company’s parent company Pepco Holdings Inc., on Monday, for adopting equal benefits, including health insurance, for domestic partners at all of its subsidiaries beginning July 1.

”I am very pleased that Pepco’s decision will reverberate beyond the district,” Cheh wrote in her final exchange with Thomas H. Graham, president of Pepco. ”As your letter points out, Pepco Holdings Inc. also operates in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia. This is a fundamentally important change that will pave the way for thousands of PHI employees throughout the mid-Atlantic region to have equal benefits for medical care, prescription drugs and mental, denta, and vision treatment.”

Cheh originally wrote a letter to Graham after hearing the concerns of GLAA activists at a Feb. 21 hearing of the Committee on Public Services and Consumer Affairs, which she chairs. Craig Howell, of GLAA, spoke at that hearing and pointed out that Pepco was one of the local firms ranked in the Ford 500 that did not offer domestic partner health insurance coverage.

Barrett Brick, president of the GLAA, praised Pepco’s decision on GLAA’s web site, and described it as a ”step in the right direction.”