Couples sue state over civil unions
"Having been together since 2005, Sean Smith and Kale Taylor are like many committed couples -- they want to make things official.
"...Now Smith and Taylor, 29, are among six couples suing the state, alleging it has failed to provide equal rights to gays and lesbians short of marriage. The lawsuit, being filed today in Circuit Court, asks the court to step in where the Legislature did not and reverse the effect of Lingle's veto.
"'We're seeking to secure equal legal protections and legal responsibilities for same-sex couples under the civil law,' said Jennifer Pizer, an attorney for Lambda Legal, one of three co-counsels filing the complaint.
"'It's not marriage,' Pizer said. 'It's a different system, separate from marriage, but it should provide the same legal tools so that a same-sex couple has a way to take care of each other that has all the same legal tools that other couples can have.'