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Freedom To Marry: ivil Rights Organizations Hold Press Conference, Honor Racial and Marriage Equality Case

JUNE 11, 2007
1:17 PM

CONTACT: Freedom To Marry  
Evan Wolfson Executive Director, Freedom to Marry
Tel: 212-851-8418; Mobile: 646-263-5552

Civil Rights Organizations Hold Press Conference, Honor Racial and Marriage Equality Case
Leading Civil Rights Organizations Commemorate 40th Anniversary of Historic Loving v. Virginia, Racial and Marriage Equality Decision

NEW YORK - JUNE 11 - On June 12th, Freedom to Marry will join several of the nation's leading civil rights organizations to hold a press conference and reception to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that advanced racial and marriage equality. The organizations will celebrate the Loving decision’s significance in American history and its relevance to today’s struggle for marriage equality.

The press conference and reception on Capitol Hill follow a thought-provoking “Freedom to Marry” ad campaign, which featured images of well-known interracial couples who would have been denied marriage but for the Loving case. The ads ran in Roll Call and The Politico and furthered the national dialogue about the current legal barriers to equality in America.

Members of Congress, representatives of key civil rights organizations, interracial couples, and plaintiffs in ongoing marriage cases in California and Maryland are expected to participate in Tuesday’s event.

Who: Representative Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Faith in America, Freedom to Marry, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Lambda Legal, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, National Black Justice Coalition, and National Center for Lesbian Rights

What: Press Conference to honor the 40th Anniversary of the Loving Decision.

When: Press Conference - June 12th at 10 am
National Press Club, Zenger Room 529 14th Street NW Washington, DC 20004
Reception - June 12th from 5 – 7 pm U.S. Capitol Building, H-137 (Open to Press)

Loving v. Virginia began when Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple, were arrested in Virginia after their Washington, DC wedding and sentenced to one year in prison. The Lovings appealed their conviction all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which struck down discriminatory restrictions on who could marry whom. On June 12, 1967, the Court ruled that: “The freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men."

Freedom to Marry is the gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide. Launched in 2003, Freedom to Marry is headed by Evan Wolfson, nationally recognized as a central “architect of the marriage equality movement.” Freedom to Marry guides and focuses this social justice movement on a nationwide level, serving as a strategy and support center for national, state, and local partners, a catalyst that drives and shapes the national debate on marriage equality, and an alliance-builder fostering support from non-gay allies.

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