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Santa Rosa forum on federal benefits for same-sex couples still has room

  • Sharon Church, left, and Vicki Baseheart, of Glen Ellen, raise their hands for their oath before receiving a marriage license at the office of the Sonoma County Clerk in Santa Rosa on Monday, July 1, 2013. (John Burgess / The Press Democrat)

Organizers say there's still room for anyone interested in attending a public forum Thursday in Santa Rosa on new rights for same-sex couples seeking spousal benefits under federal Social Security and Medicare programs.

A panel discussion will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Finley Community Center, 2060 West College Ave.

The panelists will include government officials, advocates and legal experts familiar with shifting policy in the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down laws prohibiting same-sex spouses from receiving federal benefits previously reserved for opposite-sex married couples.

The event includes breakfast from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. The doors open at 7:45 a.m.

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