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Publix Super Markets Inc. said it would expand spousal coverage for its health, dental and vision benefit plans to employees in same-sex unions performed in states where such marriages are already recognized.
Same-sex marriages will likely be legalized in the grocer's home state of Florida on Jan. 6, when a stay expires in a federal case overseen by U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle, of Tallahassee, according to the Miami Herald.
"While currently, only two states in which we operate recognize same-sex marriages, North and South Carolina, we believed it was the right thing to do to extend the benefits to all our associates across our six states, as we want our associates and their families to be healthy," Maria Brous, director of media and community relations at Lakeland-based Publix, told Progressive Grocer.
The company operates 1,095 stores in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Same-sex marriage is now recognized in 35 states and the District of Columbia.
There's a special 30-day enrollment period for same-sex married associates that began Jan. 1. Those signing up must provide certified marriage certificates and universal enrollment forms, the Herald reported.