Rhode Island governor orders his state to recognize gay marriages performed elsewhere

Gov. Lincoln Chafee says state is 'overdue, way overdue' in legalizing gay marriage

Rhode Island governor orders his state to recognize gay marriages performed elsewhere
14 May 2012

Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee on Monday ((14 May) signed an order which requires the state to recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere even though the state itself does not have marriage equality.

Chafee’s action entitles same-sex couples to the same benefits as straight couples including health insurance, life insurance and being able to list the names of both parents on a birth certificate.

Marriage Equality Rhode Island Campaign Director Ray Sullivan said such a step was necessary because same-sex couples have encountered problems with the state refusing to recognize the validity of their marriage and he said this has caused ‘harm, confusion, unnecessary expense, and heartache.’

The three states that border Rhode Island – New York, Connecticut and Massachusetts – all allow same-sex marriage in addition to the District of Columbia, Iowa and Vermont. The states of Washington and Maryland legalized the marriages earlier this year but those laws have yet to take effect.

According to the Associated Press, Chafee will continue to fight for marriage equality in his state: ‘We’re overdue, way overdue.’

Sullivan applauded the governor’s action.

‘This is a great and historic day for Rhode Island. Lincoln Chafee is now the first governor in the country to sign an executive order providing critical clarity and direction to government agencies regarding the recognition of same-sex, out-of-state marriages,’ he said in a statement. ‘While this moves us closer to full marriage-equality, nothing less is sufficient, and we will keep fighting.’

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

Power Gays: Ville Ylikahri and Karri Nieminen lead the way for Finland

Power Gays: Ville Ylikahri and Karri Nieminen lead the way for Finland

GSN meets Helsinki’s gay power couple – from politics, to clubbing, to Mr Gay Finland
No thumbnail available

Judge strikes down gay marriage ban in Arkansas - does not stay decision

Ruling comes after county offices close for the week - flood of marriage applicants expected Monday
No thumbnail available

British Embassy proudly raises gay pride flag in Tel Aviv

To mark gay pride in Tel Aviv, the British Embassy is flying the gay pride flag to show their support
No thumbnail available

Same-sex marriage put on hold in Kansas by US Supreme Court

High court grants emergency stay requested by Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt
No thumbnail available

Sochi mayor advertises 'straightest ever Winter Olympics' in YouTube parody hit

'Come to Sochi' video parodies upcoming homophobic Russian Winter Olympics
No thumbnail available

When she was still closeted, Ellen Page admits: 'I felt awkward around gay people'

Oscar nominated actress had gotten to a point where she 'felt guilty for not being myself'
Nicky Morgan, who voted against gay marriage, says homophobia is sign of ‘extremism’

Nicky Morgan, who voted against gay marriage, says homophobia is sign of ‘extremism’

Teachers should look for homophobia in students as a 'possible sign'
Living along the River Thames

Living along the River Thames

From dancing in the Docklands to deerstalking in Richmond and Twickenham
No thumbnail available

Gays in Burma allege sexual abuse by police

12 gays and transgender individuals were detained for hours, stripped off and humiliated
No thumbnail available

Mark Schultz regrets fury at Foxcatcher film for implying he had sex with John du Pont

Former Olympic wrestler tweets: 'I'm sorry I said I hated it. I love it'