Freedom To Marry

The gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide

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Science, Medicine, and Social Science Findings Overwhelmingly Favor Marriage Equality

"Prohibiting civil marriage for same-sex couples is discriminatory and unfairly denies such couples, their children and other members of their families the legal, financial and social advantages of civil marriage."

American Psychological Association's (APA) Council of Representatives

"The American Psychiatric Association supports the legal recognition of same-sex civil marriage with all rights, benefits, and responsibilities conferred by civil marriage, and opposes restrictions to those same rights, benefits, and responsibilities."

American Psychiatric Association

"The American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes that a considerable body of professional literature provides evidence that children with parents who are homosexual can have the same advantages and the same expectations for health, adjustment, and development as can children whose parents are heterosexual. When 2 adults participate in parenting a child, they and the child deserve the serenity that comes with legal recognition."

American Academy of Pediatrics

"The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, District IX (California), representing more than 5,000 physicians, dedicated to the health care of California's women, is pleased to support AB 43...The bill would amend state law to end the tradition of exclusion of same-sex couples from civil marriage and the social support and legal protections that come with it...the reasons for our support are multiple and are grounded in science and medicine."

— American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, District IX (California) in a letter to the California Assembly Judiciary Committee

Use the key resources below to learn more about how science, medicine, and social science findings overwhelmingly favor ending the exclusion of same-sex couples and their families from marriage.

 


 

FROM EVAN WOLFSON:

VIDEO: Public Policy Lecture Series: "Should State Legislatures Approve Same-Sex Marriage?"
C-SPAN
March 14, 2007

Evan Wolfson debates parenting and marriage equality with David Blankenhorn of the Institute for American Values. Evan draws on the leading experts (American Academy of Pediatrics, Family Law Quarterly) who say ending discrimination in marriage would help families and hurt no one, emphasizing that marriage matters to everyone, no matter their political persuasion.
Streaming video from Pace Law School
Download video
Evan's opening remarks on YouTube

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WHERE YOU CAN GO TO GET INVOLVED OR LEARN MORE:

Human Rights Campaign: Social Science Research
The prevailing professional opinion is that a parent's sexual orientation has nothing to do with his or her ability to be a good parent. All major research studies, including a 2001 meta-analysis of two decades of studies on the topic, show that the sexual orientation of a parent is irrelevant to the development of a child's mental health and social development and to the quality of a parent-child relationship.

The Williams Institute
The Institute supports legal scholarship, legal research, policy analysis, and education regarding legal issues that affect lesbian and gay people with numerous reports on the economic impact of ending discrimination in marriage.

Family Equality: Database of LGBTQ Family Research
In May of 2006, the Family Equality Council partnered with the University of Pennsylvania's LGBT Center for our first ever Research Symposium! Real facts about our families were shared from credible academics who convened from all over the world. We have compiled all of the research taken from the academic symposium and boiled it down to make summaries of each study. The data is now accessible and easily understandable. Feel free to search through the research to find support in specific arguments, tidbits about your specific family type, or just pure fun!

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PUBLICATIONS:

Anti-Gay Marriage Amendments Spark Psychological Distress Among GLBT Adults and Their Families
American Psychological Association
November 18, 2008

Amendments that restrict civil marriage from same-sex couples -- such as Proposition 8 that passed in California -- have led to higher levels of stress and anxiety among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adults, as well as among their families of origin, according to several studies published by the American Psychological Association.

Policy reviews with references
Some of the leading national health organizations show support for marriage equality.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (IX)
March 28, 2007
This letter to the CA Assembly Judiciary Committee endorses California's Marriage Non-discrimination Act (AB 43, Leno)

American Psychoanalytic Association Position Statement in Support of Marriage Equality
American Psychoanalytic Association
January 2007

The American Psychoanalytic Association supports the legal recognition of civil marriage for same-sex couples with all the rights, benefits and responsibilities conferred by civil marriage, and opposes discrimination against same-sex couples, and the denial to same-sex couples these same rights, benefits and responsibilities.

The Effect of Marriage Equality and Domestic Partnership on Business and the Economy
The Williams Institute
October 9, 2006

This report discusses how employer policies that treat employees with same-sex partners or spouses equally would improve the health and well-being of their families, which results in gains for both the employee and his or her family as well as to the employer.

The Legal Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships in the United States: A Social Science Perspective
University of California, Davis
September 2006

Gregory M. Herek writes an up-to-date survey of social science research, and concludes that ending the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage would benefit the couples, their kids, and society; and that as the public has a chance to consider this evidence, support for marriage equality will continue to grow.

The Effects of Marriage, Civil Union, and Domestic Partnership Laws on the Health and Well-Being of Children
American Academy of Pediatrics
July 6, 2006
The American
Academy of Pediatrics' study finds marriage equality is good for children.

PRESS RELEASE: APA backs the legalization of marriage for same-sex couples
July 28, 2004
Denying same-sex couples legal access to civil marriage is discriminatory and can adversely affect the Psychological, Physical, Social and Economic Well-Being of Gay and Lesbian Individuals. Read the American Psychological Association's professional opinion on the freedom to marry:
Resolution on Sexual Orientation and Marriage and Resolution on Sexual Orientation, Parents, and Children.

Statement on Marriage and the Family
American Anthropological Association
February 2004

The Executive Board of the American Anthropological Association, the world's largest organization of anthropologists, released a statement in February 2004 in response to President Bush's call for an anti-marriage constitutional amendment.  The statement strongly opposed such an amendment and noted, “anthropological research supports the conclusion that a vast array of family types, including families built upon same-sex partnerships, can contribute to stable and humane societies.”

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NEWS:

Read the scientific proof, that the freedom to marry helps families and harms no one, as it occurs.

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VIDEO: Public Policy Lecture Series: "Should State Legislatures Approve Same-Sex Marriage?"

From C-SPAN, Evan Wolfson debates parenting and marriage equality with David Blankenhorn of the Institute for American Values. Evan draws on the leading experts (American Academy of Pediatrics, Family Law Quarterly) who say ending discrimination in marriage would help families and hurt no one. This debate was held on March 14, 2007 at Pace Law School.
Streaming video from Pace Law School
Download video
Evan's opening remarks on YouTube

Human Rights Campaign: Social Science Research

The prevailing professional opinion is that a parent's sexual orientation has nothing to do with his or her ability to be a good parent. All major research studies, including a 2001 meta-analysis of two decades of studies on the topic, show that the sexual orientation of a parent is irrelevant to the development of a child's mental health and social development and to the quality of a parent-child relationship.

Policy reviews with references
PRESS RELEASE: APA backs the legalization of marriage for same-sex couples

July 28, 2004
Denying same-sex couples legal access to civil marriage is discriminatory and can adversely affect the Psychological, Physical, Social and Economic Well-Being of Gay and Lesbian Individuals. Read the American Psychological Association's professional opinion on the freedom to marry:
Resolution on Sexual Orientation and Marriage and Resolution on Sexual Orientation, Parents, and Children.