VA and SSA Benefits Now Extended to Missouri's Married Couples of the Same Sex

When the Supreme Court struck down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act last year, the federal government recognized marriages of same-sex couples for most purposes. However, the Social Security Administration and the Department of Veterans Affairs were unable to provide certain benefits to married same-sex couples residing in Missouri because of Missouri's refusal to recognize their marriages. The benefits included social security benefits for surviving spouses and VA home loans for married couples.

The Social Security Administration and Department of Veterans Affairs will now recognize the marriages of all Missourians for all purposes of federal law, regardless of their sexual orientation. The change is a result of a court decision earlier this month requiring Missouri to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples lawfully entered into in other jurisdictions.

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The American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri released its report “Caught in the Web of Mass Surveillance” on Oct. 23. It is the product of an extensive investigation into the existing web of surveillance cameras in St. Louis, where a number of entities maintain a hodgepodge of surveillance cameras governed by a variety of internal policies or, in many cases, no policies at all. 

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