Tri-State mother shares her passionate plea with Indiana lawmake - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Tri-State mother shares her passionate plea with Indiana lawmakers

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Karen, on the left, with her partner of 12-years, Tammy, and their children, Jackson, Tenley and Taylor. Karen, on the left, with her partner of 12-years, Tammy, and their children, Jackson, Tenley and Taylor.
INDIANA (WFIE) -
Indiana lawmakers hear passionate pleas on Monday to oppose a ban on gay marriage in the state constitution. 

The mother of three, Karen Kajmowicz, who's also a police officer, tells 14 News that she had to speak out to protect her family.

Several people spoke on Monday, many with the same goal in mind. They gathered at the state capitol to appear before a house committee that's considering that amendment.
     
In the end, no vote was taken, but Kajmowicz says she believes that will happen soon.

Back at her home, Kajmowicz says she hopes the very personal stories she shared on the house floor Monday morning will help make a difference statewide.

"I don't know that we would have felt comfortable if this didn't pass and we didn't do our part," Kajmowicz shares.

Kajmowicz, her wife Tammy, and their three children headed to Indianapolis on a mission trip of sorts to take a stand as a family before state lawmakers.

"I think that many people up there had already made up their mind long before I got there, but I need to do my part and speak my story," she says.

Kajmowicz and her partner were legally married in Iowa back in October, meaning the two can now file federal tax returns as a couple.

But Kajmowicz says most of the benefits stop there since their marriage is not recognized at home in Indiana. She says that poses several problems. For instance, Kajmowicz has insurance through her work.

She say her wife, "Because she is a stay at home Mom, she doesn't have insurance. It's a huge financial difficulty for us."

Kajmowicz says both she and her wife have medical issues, but unlike most married couples in the state, her wife can't benefit from her insurance.

"Filing medical bankruptcy is not an option for us. We pay on all of our bills and we struggle to do that, but it's very important to us and it shouldn't be a struggle to us. It should be something that is covered under insurance because she's my spouse," Kajmowicz says.

She says that she is optimistic the committee will take up the issue again soon. If it is passed, voters would have the final say in November.

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