STATUS: Anti-marriage law, no anti-gay constitutional amendment
TAKE ACTION: State advocacy groups are working toward fairness for all of West Virginia's families by blocking attempts to write discrimination into the state constitution.
HISTORY: Several times in the past four years, the West Virginia state legislature has proposed or voted on a constitutional amendment to exclude same-sex couples from marriage, but the amendment has never been approved or advanced very far.
In March 2000, the West Virginia legislature approved a state statute that prohibits the government from recognizing or performing marriages between same-sex couples.
GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:
- Fairness West Virginia is West Virginia's first statewide LGBT advocacy organization dedicated to bringing fair treatment to all West Virginians.
- Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide.
- Human Rights Campaign is the United States' largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization.
POLLING DATA: Support for the freedom to marry has increased sharply in the past 8 years, with 32% of the state's residents now supporting marriage. In 2004, just 21% were supportive. (Williams Institute, 2012)
NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES: According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 2,848 same-sex couples are living in West Virginia, representing 3.7 same-sex couples per 1,000 households.
Blog Posts Related to West Virginia
This month, Freedom to Marry is working to Light Up the Map by urging mayors from all across the United States to voice their support for marriage for same-sex couples and become Mayors for the Freedom to Marry.
In the past week, nine U.S. Senators have announced their support for the freedom to marry, explaining how their views have evolved and how they have come to understand that now is the time to stand on the Right Side of History.
For the sixth year in a row, West Virginia will be considering a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between “one man and one woman.”
Last Thursday, the WV Senate and House issued a joint resolution calling for a public vote on marriage in 2012.
Resources Related to West Virginia
Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in West Virginia.
Groundbreaking research showing a huge increase in same-sex couples identifying themselves as "unmarried partners".