On Saturday, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice will recognize straight and same-sex marriages equally when it comes to the federal justice system.
The decision will ensure that gay Americans in same-sex marriages have the same rights as opposite-sex couples when filing bankruptcy, testifying in court or visiting partners in prison.
The new policy takes effect today and will also recognize same-sex marriages for important benefit programs such as the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.
“In every courthouse...where a member of the Department of Justice stands on behalf of the United States, they will strive to ensure that same-sex marriages receive the same protections and rights as opposite-sex marriages,” said Holder. He pointed to last year's momentous Supreme Court decision overturning DOMA as the reason for the new policy.
We have the opportunity this year to elect leaders who will work to put in place pro-equality policies at the statewide and local levels as well.
From the recently-filed Florida marriage equality case to policies like tax equity for gay and lesbian employees of the City of Miami Beach, we need leaders who will make sure all levels of government comply with pro-equality directives.
SAVE will monitor this story as it develops. We'll continue to keep you updated on any new developments in the fight for equality.