Wedding bells will ring in the Land of Lincoln! Illinois will become the 15th state in the nation that will provide same-sex couples the freedom to marry. Across Illinois, same-sex couples and their children can celebrate a new era of equality.
Lambda Legal has been working hard to get to this day: From the day we filed our lawsuit in 2012, to all the legislative visits and testimony that our courageous clients provided for legislative hearings, to all the hours of drafting, preparation and technical support that our expert attorneys provided to legislators — this victory for same-sex couples and their families is sweet!
This was an enormous group effort, and Lambda Legal was proud to play a lead role in forming Illinois Unites for Marriage with our partners at the ACLU of Illinois and Equality Illinois, and many other advocates and allies who called, wrote letters and made visits to their elected officials. We all raised the voices of equality across the state — and we were heard.
Lambda Legal congratulates and thanks the bill’s sponsors — including Rep. Harris, Representatives Cassidy and Mell and Sen. Steans—along with co-sponsors Senators Koehler, Hutchinson, Harmon and Delgado. We also thank Gov. Quinn, Mayor Emanuel and other elected officials for their strong support.
Equality has momentum: On Oct. 21, New Jersey became the 14th state with the freedom to marry, following Lambda Legal’s victory after 11 years of litigation. Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted to advance the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. And soon, we hope Hawaii will approve a marriage equality law in the state where Lambda Legal litigated its first marriage case and the modern marriage equality movement began.
History keeps moving forward — because we all keep pushing it in the direction of fairness. Thank you for all your support.