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Campus listening session set on marriage amendment

November 14, 2006

Photo of Wileyt


A listening session will be held from 5-6:30 p.m. today (Nov. 15) in the Main Lounge of Memorial Union to give campus community members an opportunity to voice feelings related to the recently passed marriage amendment and discuss the implications for domestic partner benefits.

Chancellor John Wiley and Provost Patrick Farrell are expected to attend the session, which is open to students, faculty and staff.

In the wake of last week’s election, Wiley wrote an open letter to the campus community voicing his reaction to the amendment’s passage, its possible implications and the university’s continued commitment to a campus that is inclusive.

UW–Madison intends to continue offering the services and benefits it currently offers to students, employees and their partners while awaiting legal clarifications regarding the implications of the amendment, according to Wiley.

“I would like to reassure everyone that UW–Madison will continue to be a place that rejects discrimination and respects diversity of all kinds,” Wiley wrote. “There is a place for all people here, and the Nov. 7 approval of this amendment does not change that commitment.

“But there are lingering questions about what this amendment might mean for current and future benefits for employees,” he added. “To that end, I am bringing together a group of staff from human resources, equity and diversity, and other relevant areas to review the amendment and its possible impacts.”

In addition, Wiley noted that the amendment might have an impact on the university’s recruiting and retention.

“There is widespread recognition that the amendment could have a further chilling effect on our ability to recruit and retain faculty, staff and students,” he added. “All of us, by and large, want to work, study and live in an inclusive and tolerant environment, and we will remain committed to that cause.”

For the full text of the statement and links to statements of other campus governance groups, visit

Campus community members interested in additional resources related to the amendment can contact the Offices of the Dean of Students at 263-5700, or the LGBT Campus Center at 265-3344 or