FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 16, 2002
Paul Schwartz (510) 987-9924
UC Regents approve new retirement benefits for employees
with domestic partners
The University of California Board of Regents voted today
(May 16) to extend to eligible UC employees with domestic
partners a set of retirement benefits mirroring those now
offered to married UC employees.
Employees who are members of the UC Retirement Plan (UCRP)
and their qualified domestic partners and/or family members
will now be able to receive two types of death-related retirement
(1) Pre-retirement survivor income -- income paid to an eligible
domestic partner, eligible child(ren) or eligible parent if
the UCRP member dies while employed at UC, and
(2) Post-retirement survivor continuance -- income paid to
an eligible domestic partner, eligible child(ren) or eligible
parent if the UCRP member dies after leaving UC.
Prior to today's actions, only UCRP members with spouses
and/or dependent children or dependent parents could qualify
for these benefits.
"UC is constantly working to offer the broadest array
of benefits financially possible in order to give employees
choices that recognize and reflect their diverse needs,"
said Judy Boyette, UC associate vice president for human resources.
"These new retirement benefits will give many UC employees
and their loved ones significant additional financial security."
Shane Snowdon, chair of UC's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender
and Intersex Association, applauded the regents' actions.
"For many of us, the idea of not being able to pass on
our hard-earned retirement benefits has been a very real concern.
We are deeply grateful to the university for the increased
financial peace of mind this gives us and our families."
As requested by the regents at their January meeting, three
proposals in all were submitted today: one concerning retirement
benefits for employees with same-sex domestic partners; one
concerning retirement benefits for employees with opposite-sex
domestic partners; and one concerning retirement benefits
for unmarried employees without domestic partners. The same-sex
and opposite-sex domestic partners proposals, which offer
identical benefits, were adopted. It was agreed that the proposal
for unmarried employees with no domestic partners warranted
It is estimated that 2 percent of the UCRP membership with
same-sex domestic partners, and 6 percent of the UCRP membership
with opposite-sex domestic partners, would qualify for the
new survivor income benefits. Currently, there are approximately
128,500 members in the university's retirement plan.
The combined benefits approved today will require a total
one-time cost to the UC Retirement Plan of approximately $139
million and an annual cost of $7 million. These costs will
be covered by the assets of the retirement plan.
The new benefits approved today will be effective July 1,
2002, for eligible UCRP members and will not apply to UCRP
retired members with retirement dates of June 30, 2002, or
earlier. Where appropriate, these benefits are subject to
collective bargaining agreements.
UC currently also provides health benefits to employees with
same-sex domestic partners health benefits. As of Oct. 31,
2001, there were approximately 950 employees with same-sex
domestic partners participating in UC medical, vision and
UC employs more than 160,000 people systemwide at its 10
campuses, five medical centers and three national laboratories.
UC offers a wide variety of employment benefits and opportunities,
- Retirement and savings investment plans
- Medical plan
- Dental plan
- Vision plan
- Paid vacation -- three weeks per year (or more depending
- Paid sick leave -- 12 days per year with unlimited accrual
- Paid holidays -- 13 per year
- Life insurance
- Disability insurance
- Accident insurance
- Legal services plan
- Auto insurance and homeowner/renter insurance
- Tax-savings plans
- Institutional commitment to work/life balance
- Ability to pursue career opportunities at numerous locations
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