Anti-relationship recognition constitutional amendment; a federal judge has ruled that the amendment is unconstitutional, and that decision has been upheld by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, with the ruling stayed and seeking review from the U.S. Supreme Court.
On September 29, 2014, the United States Supreme Court will have its first chance to consider hearing this federal marriage case seeking the freedom to marry in Utah. The state of Utah has filed a petition seeking Supreme Court review of a June 25 ruling from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of the freedom to marry, which upheld a lower court ruling that declared it unconstitutional for Utah to deny the freedom to marry to same-sex couples.
On June 25, 2014, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals voted in favor of the freedom to marry in Utah, upholding a lower court ruling that declared it unconstitutional for Utah to deny the freedom to marry to same-sex couples. The decision is in Kitchen v. Herbert, brought by by the firm of Magleby & Greenwood, P.C., on behalf of same-sex couples, and co-counseled on appeal with the National Center for Lesbian Rights.
On December 20, 2013, U.S. District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby struck down Utah's ban on same-sex couples from marrying, declaring in Kitchen v. Herbert that the law violates the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal protection and due process.
In the three weeks where same-sex couples in Utah had the freedom to marry before the US Supreme Court issued a stay in the ruling, 1,308 marriage licenses were issued. On May 19, a federal judge ruled in Evans v. Utah that the state of Utah must respect those marriage licenses.
A hearing before a 3-judge panel at the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals was held on April 10. As the case makes its way up through the courts, Utahans across the state will continue to do the work of having conversations about why marriage matters and creating a climate for victory.
Follow the Marriage Litigation in Utah.
In 2004, anti-gay forces in Utah pushed through Utah Constitutional Amendment 3, a constitutional amendment that excludes same-sex couples from marriage and prohibits same-sex couples from any other form of legal family status.
GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:
- Utah Unites for Marriage is the grassroots public education campaign to build support for the freedom to marry in Utah.
- Equality Utah is Utah's central statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights and advocacy organization.
- The National Center for Lesbian Rights is one of the nation's leading LGBT legal organizations, currently working as co-counsel in Kitchen v. Herbert, the lawsuit seeking the freedom to marry in the state of Utah.
- The ACLU of Utah is the state affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, committed to standing up for equality for all Utahns.
- Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide.
A plurality of Utahns agree that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry in Utah: 49% agree that same-sex couples should be allowed to get a state-issued marriage license, and 48% disagree. Additionaly 94% of Utahns believe the freedom to marry will not impact their marriage, with 84% saying it won't impact their family and 65% saying it wont adversely impact the state. (Benenson Strategy Group, September 2014)
NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES:
According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 3,909 same-sex couples are living in Utah, representing 4.5 same-sex couples per 1,000 households.
Blog Posts Related to Utah
Today, September 29, a new statewide poll conducted by Benenson Strategy Group for Freedom to Marry found that a plurality of Utahns – 49% in favor versus 48% opposed – agree that same sex-couples should be able to share in the freedom to marry and receive a civil marriage license in Utah.
Today, September 10, 7 different petitions seeking certiorari in marriage cases from 5 states were distributed for the September 29 conference at the United States Supreme Court.
The briefs lay out the urgency of bringing an end to the tangible harms and national disparities in how same-sex couples and their families are treated and encourage the Supreme Court to bring the country to national resolution without delay.
Resources Related to Utah
Momentum for the freedom to marry continues to build. And it’s clear from the past few weeks the path ahead is dynamic and full of flashpoints, including in some of the more conservative parts of the country. This memo looks at what the recent Ohio, Oklahoma, and Utah court victories—and others potentially soon to come—mean in the context of our overall strategy to win the freedom to marry nationwide.
Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in Utah.
Groundbreaking research showing a huge increase in same-sex couples identifying themselves as "unmarried partners".