Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders applauded today’s launch of Rhode Islanders United for Marriage, a broad coalition of LGBT advocates, clergy members, labor organizations, and civil rights leaders dedicated to achieving marriage equality in RhodeIsland in 2013.
“GLAD is proud to take an active part in this history-making effort,” said Janson Wu, GLAD staff attorney. “We’re convinced that this year RhodeIsland will join the other New England states in leading the nation toward marriage equality for all.”
Legislative leaders have committed to advancing the bill and grassroots supporters are already taking action across the state. A House Judiciary Committee hearing on the marriage equality bill, HB 5015, took place on Tuesday January 15. There, loving and committed same-sex couples shared their stories with legislators, and talked about why marriage matters deeply to them.
In 2004, Massachusetts became the first state where same-sex couples could marry, the result of GLAD’s historic lawsuit, Goodridge v. Department of Public Health. GLAD also brought the lawsuit (Kerrigan v. Department of Public Health) that brought marriage equality to Connecticut, and was involved in the legislative and ballot efforts in New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine, now all places where same-sex couples can marry.
“It’s time for RhodeIsland’s elected officials to step up for their constituents,” said Wu. “Loving same-sex couples all over the state, some together for decades, some raising children, need and deserve the protections and the respect of marriage.”
Those who want to support RhodeIsland’s push for marriage equality can visit www.riunitedformarriage.org/petition.
Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders is New England’s leading legal organization dedicated to ending discrimination based on sexual orientation, HIV status, and gender identity and expression.
For more information about marriage or other LGBTQ rights, contact GLAD’s free Legal InfoLine at 1-800-455-GLAD orwww.glad.org/rights