President Barack Obama  
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President Barack Obama on Friday granted a number of new federal benefits, including Social Security, to same-sex couples, nearly a year after the Supreme Court struck down a measure prohibiting federal recognition of gay marriage, the Associated Press reports.

The provision extends even to couples living in states where same-sex marriage is not legal, the report says. It also applies to veterans benefits and work leave for caring for sick spouses, AP reports. The move is part of the president’s goal to extend whatever protections he can to gays and lesbians.

The announcement comes just ahead of a move by the Department of Veterans Affairs to allow gay people who tell “the government they are married to a veteran to be buried alongside them in a national cemetery, drawing on the VA’s authority to waive the usual marriage requirement,” AP reports.

Read more at the Associated Press.