For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 
Contact: 

Vaishalee Raja, Equality California
916-284-9187 vaishalee@eqca.org

Equality California Profoundly Disappointed in Court’s Decision Denying Motion to Lift Stay in Prop 8 Case

WASHINGTON - Today the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals denied a motion from the American Foundation for Equal Rights to lift the temporary stay in the federal court challenge to Proposition 8.

Equality California, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, and Lambda Legal recently filed a joint amicus brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals asking the court to lift the stay.

Statement from Equality California Executive Director Geoff Kors:

“Today’s ruling is a major setback for same-sex couples and their families who must continue living every day in legal limbo without the basic freedoms and protections guaranteed to them by our nation’s Constitution. Every day same-sex couples are denied the freedom to marry, their families suffer significant harm.

“We cannot stand idle as the courts continue to deny our basic humanity. We must demand our equality and speak out against this injustice. We call on members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and our friends and allies to speak to five people you know today to let them know that denying loving couples the freedom to marry causes irreparable harm and ask them to stand with us as we continue our struggle for full equality.”

U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker ruled that Prop 8 was unconstitutional in August 2010. However, that same month the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay, preventing same-sex couples from marrying while the case is on appeal.

On January 4, 2011, the federal appeals court asked the California Supreme Court for guidance on an issue related to whether the sponsors of Prop 8 have standing to pursue an appeal. The California Supreme Court said on February 16, 2011, that it would consider the question with oral arguments to be held “as early as September,” meaning a decision likely would not come until the end of this year at the earliest.

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Equality California is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots-based, statewide advocacy organization whose mission is to achieve equality and civil rights for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Californians.

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