Thursday, December 13, 2012
The Association of Bragg Officers’ Spouses, under fire for denying membership to the wife of a lesbian soldier, has announced on its website it will review the policy it used to reject Ashley Broadway's membership request:
"In response to recent interest in the membership requirements of our organization, we will review the issue at our next board meeting. This will be our first opportunity for our board to discuss the issue since it has been brought to our attention. We intend to review the request in a timely manner."
Broadway has been in a committed partnership with Army Lt. Col. Heather Mack since 1997, according to letter written by Broadway posted on the American Military Partner Association website. The couple has a young son together.
After Mack was assigned to Fort Bragg in North Carolina, Broadway attempted to join the Association of Bragg Officers' Spouses, only to be rebuffed.
Broadway wrote in her "open letter" to the Association of Bragg Officers' Spouses that the reason she was given for being denied membership was because she didn't have a military spouse ID card. Broadway is unable to get such a card (even though she and Mack were legally married after the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell) because the military, part of the federal government, doesn't recognize same-sex marriages.
In urging ABOS to reconsider its rejection of her membership request, Broadway wrote:
My families, and families like mine, are included in the vision of tomorrow’s Army. Please keep in mind that DADT was repealed over a year ago. Our Commander-in-Chief supports us; I was the first same-sex military spouse invited by the First Lady to attend her Mother’s Day Tea. We are a part of the face of this country’s future, and the White House, Pentagon, and many other posts are leaning forward to embrace this progression.
The American Military Partner Association has posted a petition to request the ABOS change its policy to accept officers' spouses in same-sex marriages.