Day is a disabled father, whose repeated requests for assistance
for his children has been ignored for over two years. Indications
in the government’s responses point to anti-gay discrimination.
“Asking a father to wait more than 2 years for the SSA to decide
whether his children are entitled to disability insurance suggests
either a failure on the part of the agency to do its job or blatant
discrimination based on the fact that these children have two
dads,” said Beth Littrell, Staff Attorney at Lambda Legal Southern
Regional Office based in Atlanta, Georgia. “Either way the SSA’s
actions are unfair and unacceptable.”
In February of 2006, Day completed the applications for Child
Insurance Benefits for his children. He provided birth certificates
and court documents that acknowledge him as the legal parent of the
children. The SSA acknowledged receipt of the application and
promised to provide a response in 45 days. After over a year with
no response, Lambda Legal sent a letter on Mr. Day’s behalf seeking
action by the agency. The SSA still did not provide an initial
determination of eligibility citing unspecified “legal questions
and policy issues” involved with the application. Mr. Day has
provided all the necessary documentation to establish a legitimate
parent-child relationship and has fulfilled all of the SSA’s
prerequisites. The SSA is required to determine whether or not the
children are entitled to Child Insurance Benefits as dependents of
Mr. Day, but have yet to do so for more than two years .
“As a parent, it is my job to provide for my children.
Unfortunately, the SSA, who is supposed to help during a time of
need, is standing in the way,” said Gary Day.
“The SSA is putting these children at a disadvantage by being
unresponsive to Mr. Day’s request,” said co-counsel Lisa A. Linsky.
“He and his children meet all the requirements that the agency
needs to provide benefits. Delaying a response to their request for
assistance for over two years is unwarranted and prejudicial to
[Crossposted at ProudParenting.com]