Oregon will honor marriages of same-sex couples who legally marry out of state
October 17, 2013
Today, state officials in Oregon announced that effective immediately, Oregon would equally honor the marriages of same-sex couples who legally marry out of state.
Oregon's Chief Operating Officer Michael Jordan issued a memo today to all state agencies explaining that legally married same-sex couples would be eligible for any state protections and responsibilities of marriage that different-sex couples receive. Jordan wrote:
Oregon agencies must recognize all out-of-state marriages for the purposes of administering state programs. That includes legal, same sex marriages performed in other states and countries.
The decision is a step forward for same-sex couples in Oregon - married same-sex couples will now be granted with the same respect as married different-sex couples, just as married non-gay couples are treated when they move between states.
But the decision also contributes to the already-confusing patchwork of federal and state laws and legal opinions that same-sex couples across the United States must navigate to protect their families and live their lives. No one should have to cross a state border to marry the person they love - and the news today does nothing to change the constitutional amendment that bans same-sex couples from marrying in Oregon. It underscores that it's time for marriage in Oregon.
The only surefire way for same-sex couples and their families to enjoy all of the protections and responsibilities of marriage - and be able to declare their love and commitment in the state where they live - is by overturning the constitutional amendment in the state and extending the freedom to marry to all couples.
Oregon United for Marriage is the coalition in the state working hard to overturn the anti-family amendment and replace it with an amendment that guarantees the freedom to marry to same-sex couples in Oregon. The organization has already collected thousands of signatures from fair-minded Oregonians who want same-sex couples to be able to share in the joys of marriage, and the state will be able to stand on the right side of history in November 2014 by voting for marriage.