Partner Benefits

Regulations for Same-Sex Partners of LGBT Foreign Affairs Employees

GLIFAA applauds President Obama, Secretary Clinton, and other agency leaders for their actions in moving to extend benefits to both same-sex domestic partners of federal employees, as well as children of those partners.

GLIFAA thanks our many friends and allies who were part of making this change possible. Read GLIFAA President Bob Gilchrist’s remarks from a thank-you toast at the State Department on August 5, 2009. (pdf)

Read the news of the announcement itself, as well as the reaction by GLIFAA and other organizations:

The State Department has now implemented the policy guidlines for domestic partner benefits. See the cable below as well as the changes to the FAM. This a historic change!

June 2010 Memorandum

President Obama reaffirmed these regulatory changes and released a presidential memorandum on June 2, 2010. This memorandum instructs the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to extend certain benefits to the same-sex partners of LGBT employees and instructs OPM to ensure that any new benefits be extended to partners to the extent permitted by law.

Agency Policies

Several agencies have implemented new policies following these guidelines. Read their announcements and guidelines below.

Department of State

Other Agencies

Further Questions

If you have questions, please work with Human Resources Officers at post, or in Washington through personnel technicians, CDOs, and others as appropriate. This may be an education process for them just as it is for GLIFAA members, but it is important that we try to work through the system to help make it function.

Queries for State personnel that cannot be answered through regular channels can be directed through “Ask Admin” intranet site at or through the “Ask HR” site at . Questions for which there is not already a pre-written answer on either site can be addressed through the “submit a question” function. State Personnel can also send Questions/concerns directly to the Director General’s office through an email to “DG Direct” at

The GLIFAA board asks that those questions that can’t be answered through other avenues — or which present broader issues to be addressed — be sent to We also seek comments from members on how smoothly the process moves for them at posts and in Washington.