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Pentagon Extends New Benefits To Same-Sex Spouses

In a move that's being called "good faith" from some LGBT military activists, the Pentagon has decided to extend new benefits to married same-sex couples. 

NBC News reports:

The Pentagon plans to extend to legally married same-sex couples the same privileges and programs that are provided to legally married heterosexual couples, including benefits tied to health care and housing, the official said.

In addition, the official said that service members who are stationed in one of the 37 states where same-sex marriage is illegal will be offered up to 10 days of leave so they can travel to one of the 13 states, plus the District of Columbia, that grant same-sex marriage licenses.

The Defense Department had earlier planned to permit same-sex spouses of military members to sign a declaration form in order to receive limited benefits, such as access to military stores and certain welfare programs, according to The Associated Press.

Sec. of Defense Chuck Hagel has released a memo outlining the welcome news: