Anti-marriage law, no anti-gay constitutional amendment
Marriage supporters across the state are continuing to speak out in favor of equality, working to overturn an anti-marriage law and block attempts to write discrimination into the West Virginia Constitution.
In October 2013, private lawyers filed a federal lawsuit, McGee v. Cole, seeking the freedom to marry for same-sex couples across the state of West Virginia. Read more about marriage litigation in West Virginia.
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.
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".