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Italy: Central Italian Town Votes for Marriage Equality

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

Antonio Garullo and Mario Ottocento

A small town just south of Rome has voted to support recognition of a same sex couple’s wedding.

Towleroad.com reports:

Antonio Garullo and Mario Ottocento [pictured] were the first Italian gay couple to be married more than 10 years ago in Holland. In 2004 they asked the Ufficio dello Stato Civile of the Comune of Latina to register their marriage but their application was turned down. So the couple sued theComune of Latina, but in 2005 the Tribunale of latina rejected their complaint. Then they appealed the Court decision to the Court of Appeal of Rome where they found a second denial. Eventually the couple appealed the second negative decision to the Supreme Court of Cassation. In 2012 this court rejected their appeal but delivered a landmark opinion for LGBT rights. That Court said that the Italian laws should treat gay and straight couple equally. Antonio and Mario asked the Comune of Latina to record their marriage on April 15 and this afternoon the Council of the Latina approved in a 14-2 vote (1 absentee) a motion in support of the record of their marriage.

It’s now up to the Italian Government to decide whether to approve Latina’s request.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Italy.

USA, Louisiana: Shreveport City Council Passes Anti Discrimination Ordinance

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

Louisiana mapThe city Council in Shreveport, Louisiana just passed an ordinance to ban discrimination in employment, housing, and public spaces against its LGBT citizens.

The New Civil Rights Movement reports:

The Shreveport City Council minutes ago passed an ordinance banning employment, housing, and public space discrimination against LGBT people. The Louisiana city is the state’s third-largest, with about 200,000 residents. The vote tonight was 6-1. While the state has no protections for LGBT people, Shreveport becomes the second city in the state, after New Orleans, to offer a fully-inclusive ordinance. Debate and public testimony lasted about two hours.

Even in Louisiana things are changing. Can we get a marriage equality bill now? LOL…

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Louisiana.

USA, Texas: LGBT Equality Resolution May Be Back

Friday, August 30th, 2013

Dallas City Hall

Dallas City Hall – Apple Maps

After dying a quiet death several months ago, a resolution in support of job nondiscrimination and marriage equality may be getting a new life.

The Dallas Voice reports:

Councilman Scott Griggs, the resolution’s author, said this week he plans to bring it before a committee in coming months. Committee meetings begin next week. It’s been nearly three months since a showdown at City Hall between LGBT advocates and council members who opposed the resolution after it failed to make it onto the June 12 agenda. This was after former Councilwoman Delia Jasso pulled her support from a memo, which meant the council was no longer required to consider the item… Griggs has rewritten the resolution to include the landmark rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court in two marriage equality cases in late June. He said he’s sent the draft to Councilman Adam Medrano, who chairs the LGBT Task Force, to get the group’s input on the language.

It shouldn’t be so difficult to get a non-binding resolution passed. But this is Texas, after all.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Texas.

USA, Arizona: Tucson’s City Council Passes Civil Unions Ordinance

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Tucson, ArizonaAnother crack in Arizona’s ban on recognition of same sex couples. The state’s second-largest city just passed a civil unions ordinance, following in Bisbee’s footsteps. AZCentral reports:

Tucson has for a decade offered domestic-partner registries, recognizing same-sex couples as spouses in terms of allowing them to visit partners in the hospital and accessing city facilities such as the library or pools. The City Council unanimously approved renaming the domestic-partnership ordinance the civil-union ordinance and changing references to “domestic partnership” to “civil unions.” The ordinance also adds language similar to the ordinance Bisbee passed June 5, including allowing couples to file with the city personal legal documents related to topics such as property ownership and child custody.

Congratulations to my hometown for taking such a bold step. 🙂

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arizona.

Arizona, USA: Tucson City Council Unanimously Approves Civil Unions Ordinance

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Tucson, ArizonaSome more good news out of Tucson, as the city council unanimously approves a civil unions ordinance. LGBTQ Nation reports:

The Tucson city council on Tuesday voted unanimously to approve an ordinance allowing civil unions between same-sex couples. The measure, approved by a vote of 6-0, is similar to an ordinance approved in Bisbee, Ariz., earlier this month. It allows couples to register a civil union with the city, expanding their rights related to inheritances, property ownership and guardianships.

Tucson’s my home town and where most of my family still lives – hooray for Tucson!!!!

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arizona.

Texas, USA: Dallas City Council Fights Over Marriage Equality Resolution

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Texas mapThere’s been quite a lot going on in Dallas over a proposed marriage equality resolution, including Mayor Mike Rawlings claiming not to be absent while on a trip to South America to block any action during his absence. Wednesday morning, gay rights activists showed up at a city council meeting to push for a vote. The Dallas Voice reports:

Tensions ran high after speakers addressed the council, resulting in several audience members walking out, turning their backs on Councilman Dwaine Caraway and even shouting at council members during the meeting. Lesbian activist Cd Kirven said she expected more from council members and that they should support civil rights. “You, as a municipal representative, should always represent those ideals and are a critical part of freedom’s foundation,” Kirven told council members. “Again the LGBT community is disappointed by officials who claim to be allies.” She then asked the few dozen audience members wearing red in support of marriage equality to stand to show the strong presence of the LGBT community.

The Dallas Morning News also reports from the meeting, where one council member questioned the strategies being used to block the resolution:

Outgoing council member Angela Hunt, who signed Griggs’ memo to get the resolution on the agenda, isn’t buying it. “Pauline, thank you for having the courage to step forward,” said Hunt. “I have been amazed by the legalistic gymnastics that have been created to avoid putting this on the agenda. … I think it is absolutely wrong that the word ‘absence’ no longer means ‘absence.’ The mayor will be marked in the minutes as absent on city business. The charter does not say absent and incapable of serving his duties. The charter says absent orincapable of assuming his duties.”

KERA News thinks the incoming city council might have better luck:

Councilwoman Delia Jasso scuttled the resolution last month when she removed her support, leaving it without the necessary five signatures to call a vote. Mayor Mike Rawlings declined to move it forward, saying marriage equality is not a city issue. But, council members generally agreed they would take it up in committee and likely send a marriage and workplace equality resolution to the next council, which will be sworn in June 24. Council member Jerry Allen said he would be pleased to introduce it in the budget, finance and audit committee, which he chairs.

It’s amazing how hard they are fighting against what’s purely a symbolic resolution. But it would be a big blow to opponents to have one of Texas’s biggest cities on the record for marriage equality.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Texas.

Texas, USA: El Paso Voters Pass LGBT Protections Ordinance

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

Texas mapThe long fight over domestic partner benefits in El Paso took another turn yesterday, as voters approved it and sent the only mayoral candidate who supported the measure into a runoff. The Dallas Voice reports:

Elsewhere, El Paso voters approved Proposition 7, which adds gay employees to to the nondiscrimination policy in employment and provision of benefits, the El Paso Times reports. Among other things, Prop 7 will allow the city to continue offering DP benefits. Only one of the city’s seven mayoral candidates, Steve Ortega, publicly supported Prop 7. Ortega advanced to a runoff against Oscar Leeser.

You may remember the fight that ensued after the city council first passed the domestic partners ordinance in 2009 – a voter repeal that unintentionally took rights away from grandparents too, a court battle, and now this. For the full history, click here to see our past articles on the subject.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Texas.

Texas, USA: Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings Calls Marriage Equality Resolution a “Misuse” of Time

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Dallas Mayor Mike RawlingsAs the Dallas city council prepares to vote on a marriage equality endorsement, the city’s mayor thinks it’s all a waste of time. The Dallas Voice reports:

Rawlings’ chief of staff told the Morning News that the mayor hadn’t read the resolution, even though he received a copy of it three weeks ago. Then, on Wednesday, Rawlings told The DMN’s Rudy Bush that while he personally supports marriage equality, he doesn’t think the council should debate political issues over which it has no power: “I don’t want to be talking about late-term abortions, or gun control, or GITMO,” he said. To do so is “a misuse of City Council time.”

Rawlings has also refused to join the Mayors for the Freedom to Marry… but great, he “personally” supports marriage equality.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Texas.

New Mexico, USA: Santa Fe Says Yes to Marriage Equality

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

Santa Fe - Google Maps

from Google Maps

Gay Star News reports:

New Mexico capital Santa Fe voted in favor of same-sex marriage last night (24 April). Over an hour of discussion, five city councilors voted for equal marriage, one voted against, and two abstained. While the passage of the resolution does not change the law, supporters are saying this is the first step towards marriage equality in the US state.

The move comes on the heels of the Mayor urging county clerks to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples last month.

The ACLU has also brought a lawsuit against the state to secure full marriage equality.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in New Mexico.

Rhode Island, USA: Warwick City Council Endorses Marriage Equality

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

Rhode IslandThe Warwick city council endorsed the marriage equality bill currently under consideration by the Rhode Island legislature. On Top Magazine reports:

Warwick city councilors unanimous approved the resolution in front of a crowd estimated at 70 people, most of whom favored marriage equality. The resolution was submitted by Councilwoman Camille Vella-Wilkinson, The Providence Journal reported. City councils in Providence and East Providence have approved similar resolutions.

The move comes as the Senate stalls on the bill, although a vote is supposedly planned sometime later this month.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Rhode Island.