Kansas

STATUS:

Anti-relationship recognition constitutional amendment; Kansas officials in some counties have directed clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples following the Supreme Court's denial to review the 10th Circuit ruling in favor of the freedom to marry on October 6. Other counties are likely to implement the 10th Circuit ruling soon.

WHAT'S HAPPENING:

On October 9, Johnson County in Kansas began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but on Friday, October 10, the Kansas Supreme Court placed the order on hold, setting a briefing schedule to asses the issues involved and scheduling a hearing for November 6.

In addition, on October 10 the American Civil Liberties Union of Kanasas filed a new federal lawsuit, Marie v. Moser, against U.S. District Court judges Sedgwick and Douglas behalf of couples who need the freedom to marry in the state. On October 13, the ACLU filed a motion for preliminary injunction in the case. The case is assigned to Judge Daniel D. Crabtree.

Kansas officials in some counties have directed clerks to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples following the Supreme Court's denial to review the 10th Circuit ruling in favor of the freedom to marry on October 6. Other counties are likely to implement the 10th Circuit ruling soon.

State advocacy groups are working toward fairness for all of Kansas' families by overturning a constitutional amendment that prohibits any form of family status for same-sex couples in the state.

In 2013, private lawyers filed a lawsuit in Kansas seeking legal respect for a same-sex couple's out-of-state marriage. Read more about marriage litigation in Kansas.

HISTORY:

In 2005, anti-gay forces in Kansas pushed through Amendment 1, a constitutional amendment that excludes same-sex couples from marriage and prohibits same-sex couples from attaining any form of legal family status. 

GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:

  • Kansas Equality Coalition is a unified statewide group of fair-minded people who are determined to end discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide. 
  • Human Rights Campaign is the United States' largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality. 

POLLING DATA: 

Support for same-sex couples continues to grow in Kansas, with 66% of voters saying they support either marriage or civil union for same-sex couples. Just 32% of respondents said they were opposed to any legal family status for gay couples and even a majority of Republicans (53%) favor either marriage or civil unions. (Public Policy Polling, February 2014)

NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES:

According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 4,009 same-sex couples are living in Kansas, representing 3.6 same-sex couples per 1,000 households.

Blog Posts Related to Kansas

Finishing the Job: how marriage is moving forward nationwide

Now, as momentum surges across the country, it is more important for supporters to do all they can to speak out for the freedom to marry nationwide. Here's what's going on in the 4 other states set up for the freedom to marry soon, plus the 15 where same-sex couples continue to be denied the freedom to marry.

Officials in Johnson County, KS direct county clerks to issue marriage licenses

Today, October 8, Kansas officials directed clerks in Johnson County to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in light of the October 6 Supreme Court decision to deny review of the 10th Circuit ruling in favor of the freedom to marry.

Couples in 4th and 10th Circuits eagerly await the freedom to marry

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court denied review of five cases seeking the freedom to marry, leaving standing marriage victories in three federal circuits and opening the door to the freedom to marry in many more states.

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Resources Related to Kansas

Pew Poll Finds Growing Support for Freedom to Marry Among Evangelicals, Majority Support Among Youth

A comprehensive Pew poll found majority support for the freedom to marry among young people, college graduates and Catholics, with growing support among all other religious categories.

Kansas Census Snapshot

Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in Kansas.

Geographic Trends Among Same-Sex Couples in the U.S. Census and the American Community Survey

Groundbreaking research showing a huge increase in same-sex couples identifying themselves as "unmarried partners".

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