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Utah LGBT advocacy group to file amicus briefs in DOMA, Prop 8 cases

Wednesday, January 30, 2013
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SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Pride Center announced Wednesday that it will file an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the pending cases involving the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8.

Utah Pride said it has retained a bipartisan team of prominent Utah attorneys to challenge Utah’s system of discrimination and to seek full legal equality for Utah’s LGBT community.


The State of Utah has constructed a comprehensive system of legal discrimination that profoundly impacts LGBTQ citizens and their families, the Center said, in a statement.

The State of Utah has enacted laws that purposely raise obstacles that make it harder to start a Gay Straight Alliance at a public high school than to start a legal corporation in the state of Utah; that demean LGBTQ teens and their families by treating them as lesser than their straight peers; that prohibit same-sex couples from adopting children in need of loving homes; and that deny loving couples the right to marry.

“Our experience has shown that Utah’s LGBTQ community faces systematic discrimination from government and in employment, housing, public accommodations, adoption, marriage, school safety, and throughout every part of life,” said Valerie Larabee, Executive Director of Utah Pride.

“We are excited to have Brett L. Tolman and Paul C. Burke as our advocates to the U.S. Supreme Court. We look forward to the day when all Utahns and all Americans enjoy full legal equality.”

Utah Pride’s legal team will encourage the U.S. Supreme Court to apply heightened scrutiny to review laws that discriminate against LGBTQ citizens, and argue that the U.S. Supreme Court should recognize that every American has the constitutional right to marry the person they love.

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