HRC Alabama celebrates as marriage equality arrives for the state’s committed, loving gay and lesbian couples
MONTGOMERY—Today, Tori Sisson and her partner Shanté Wolfe became the first same-sex couple to marry in Montgomery. This news came as the U.S. Supreme Court ordered that it would not extend a temporary stay placed on a federal court ruling in January that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.
“Marrying the woman I love in the state we call home has long been a dream. Today that dream became a reality,” said HRC Alabama Field Organizer Tori Sisson, who was able to marry her partner, Shanté Wolfe, this morning in Montgomery. Together, they were the first same-sex couple to marry in Montgomery. “Words cannot begin to express the overwhelming joy I felt this morning.”
In January, U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade struck down Alabama’s discriminatory state constitutional amendment banning same-sex couples from marrying. Soon thereafter, she placed a 14-day stay on her ruling to allow Alabama state officials to appeal the ruling. Earlier this month, the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit had denied the Alabama Attorney General’s motion for a stay in Searcy v. Strange and Strawser v. Strange. State officials then appealed Granade’s ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court, which said today that it would not extend the stay and allow marriage equality to finally arrive in Alabama.
“Marriage equality has come to Alabama, and we congratulate all of the committed, loving gay and lesbian couples who are now able to marry in the place they call home,” said HRC Alabama State Director R. Ashley Jackson.
HRC Alabama recognizes the tremendous commitment to equality that plaintiffs Cari Searcy and Kimberly McKeand, and their attorneys Christine Hernandez and David Kennedy, have shown in their fight for marriage equality and legal recognition in Alabama. It also recognizes plaintiffs James Strawser and John Humphrey, who have recently been joined in court by the National Center for Lesbian Rights, for their own efforts to achieve equality in Alabama.
HRC Alabama is working to advance equality for LGBT Alabamians who have no state or municipal level protections in housing, workplace, or public accommodations and state protections from hate crimes. Through HRC Alabama, we are working toward a future of fairness every day—changing hearts, minds and laws toward achieving full equality.
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. HRC envisions a world where LGBT people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.
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