Hawaii Marriage Equality Supporters Hail U.S. Supreme Court Ruling

June 26, 2013

Community Anticipates Analysis from Legislative Task Force 

Honolulu, HI.   Hawaii United for Marriage (HUM) applauded today’s U.S. Supreme Court decisions that struck down a key section of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and cleared the way for legal same-sex marriages in California.

“This is a huge victory for loving, married couples and their families across the country,” said Lois Perrin, Legal Director of the ACLU of Hawaii and founding member of HUM.  “This high court ruling affirms that all committed couples who marry deserve equal legal respect and treatment.”

Perrin said DOMA forced the federal government to pick and choose among marriages, and discriminate against some families through what became known as the “gay exception.”  That exception caused pain and financial harm.

Today’s ruling means that couples in states which recognize marriage between same-sex couples can better protect one another and their families because they will finally be included in the federal safety net.

However, the Supreme Court’s decision will not change the fact that same-sex couples are not allowed to marry in Hawaii because the state has not enacted a marriage equality bill.   Lawmakers approved a resolution to convene a task force to study marriage equality, and that task force has been instructed to examine the high court’s rulings in both the DOMA case and the Proposition 8 case in California.

 “We are excited to see the Task Force get to work in examining how same-sex couples in Hawaii would now benefit from the protections of marriage if the legislature takes action in 2014,” Perrin said.  “Twelve states and the District of Columbia have already approved marriage equality.   With today’s ruling, we look forward to continuing the discussion of ending discrimination and ensuring that all families in Hawaii—gay or straight—will receive equal treatment under the law.”

Hawaii United for Marriage is a statewide coalition of religious congregations, businesses, labor unions and community organizations.  More information is available at:  www.HawaiiUnited.org

 

Contact:

Jim McCoy

Ho’akea Communications

543-8374/282-3440