Family Equality Council, America’s foremost advocate for LGBT family equality, offers its full support for the Respect for Marriage Act just introduced in the U.S. Senate. “For LGBT families raising children, marriage is more than just benefits and protections,” said Family Equality Council Executive Director Jennifer Chrisler. “Marriage is also an institution that carries with it a universal definition of family. It communicates society’s acceptance of a loving relationship and the children who are part of that family.”
The Respect for Marriage Act was introduced by Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Sen. Christopher Coons (D-DE) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO), Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI).
RFMA repeals the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and restores the rights of all currently lawfully married couples, including same-sex couples, allowing them to receive the benefits of marriage under federal law. The bill also provides same-sex couples with guarantees that federal benefits and protections bestowed on a marriage in one state would continue even if a couple moves or travels to another state.