California is the 31st U.S. state, admitted to the Union on September 9, 1850. It is the most populous U.S. state, and its largest city is Los Angeles, the second most populous city in the U.S. Its capital city is Sacramento.

LGBT Rights in California: Same-sex marriage was legal in California for a five-month period in 2008 until voters approved Proposition 8 in November of the same year, banning marriage between gay couples. The ban was struck down in 2013, after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to recognize the legal standing of the opponents of same-sex marriage, and same-sex marriages recommenced on June 28, 2013.

California grants extensive protections for LGBT people under state law, particularly for housing, credit, labor and/or employment, and joint adoption by same-sex couples. Hate crimes laws include protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.

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Calif. governor signs law to improve healthcare training related to LGBT seniors

Friday, October 11, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A new California law signed by Gov. Jerry Brown late Wednesday aims to ensure that the state's LGBT seniors get respectful and competent elder care by integrating LGBT cultural competency instruction into training received by residential care facility administrators. [ Read more → ]

Calif. requires health plans to offer equal fertility coverage for same-sex couples

Wednesday, October 9, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Unmarried and same-sex couples will be ensured the same access to insurance coverage for fertility treatments as heterosexual couples under a bill Gov. Jerry Brown announced signing Tuesday. [ Read more → ]
Gov. Jerry Brown (D-Calif.)

Calif. governor Jerry Brown signs transgender birth certificate bill

Tuesday, October 8, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill designed to make it easier for transgender Californians to obtain birth certificates reflecting name and gender changes. [ Read more → ]

Social media trolls hammer transgender homecoming queen

Monday, September 23, 2013
A transgender teen in Orange County, Calif., who was crowned her school’s Homecoming Queen last week, has been deluged by an outpouring of negative feedback on and transphobic comments on social media. [ Read more → ]
Heath Adam Ackley

Theology professor to leave Christain college after coming out as transgender

Monday, September 23, 2013
AZUSA, Calif. -- A veteran theology professor at Azusa Pacific University, a California Christian college, has been asked to leave his teaching post of 15 years after announcing last week that he is transgender. [ Read more → ]
KNBC-TVCassidy Lynn Campbell

Transgender teen crowned Homecoming Queen at Calif. high school

Saturday, September 21, 2013
HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. -- A transgender student made history Friday night when she was elected crowned homecoming queen at an Orange County, Calif. high school. [ Read more → ]
Virginia Gurrola

Calif. town mayor stripped of duties for declaring June LGBT pride month

Thursday, September 19, 2013
PORTERVILLE, Calif. -- An ongoing clash in Porterville, Calif., between the mayor and city council members over a proclamation designating June as LGBT Pride month, has cost the mayor and vice mayor their jobs. [ Read more → ]

Court to decide if juror can be dismissed based on sexual orientation

Wednesday, September 18, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO -- An appeals court gave little indication Wednesday whether a potential juror can be booted from a trial solely because of sexual orientation. [ Read more → ]
Ricardo Lara

Calif. bill that would penalize Boy Scouts’ tax exempt status shelved

Thursday, September 12, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A bill to strip the Boy Scouts of America of its tax-exempt status in California because of the organization's refusal to allow gay troop leaders stalled Thursday in the Legislature after failing to garner enough votes to pass. [ Read more → ]
Toni Atkins

Calif. Senate OKs bill to aid transgender citizens with name changes, identity documents

Monday, September 9, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California state Senate on Friday approved a bill to provide transgender citizens improved access to legal name changes and identity documents that accurately reflect their gender identity. [ Read more → ]

Transgender students face ‘outing’ when schools do not have inclusive policies

Saturday, September 7, 2013
Getting accustomed to a new school as a transfer student may be a difficult experience. For lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender studies junior Rob Ortiz, the necessary first week of school changes and challenges were added to by another set of stressors: dealing with a university staff that was not prepared to answer the pleas of someone who identifies as a transgender male. [ Read more → ]

Calif. prison officials to allow same-sex weddings for inmates

Wednesday, September 4, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California prison officials have confirmed that inmates can get married to someone of the same sex under certain conditions. [ Read more → ]
Tracey Cooper-Harris (right) with her spouse Maggie.

Federal judge: Veterans Affairs can’t deny benefits to same-sex couples

Friday, August 30, 2013
LOS ANGELES -- A judge in Los Angeles ruled Thursday that a lesbian Army veteran and her spouse should be entitled to disability benefits given the recent Supreme Court ruling that struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act. [ Read more → ]

Federal appeals court upholds Calif. ban on gay-to-straight conversion therapy

Thursday, August 29, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court on Thursday upheld the nation's first-of-its-kind law in California prohibiting health practitioners from offering psychotherapy aimed at making gay youth straight. [ Read more → ]
Todd Gloria

San Diego to become the nation’s second largest city with openly gay mayor

Saturday, August 24, 2013
SAN DIEGO -- Openly gay City Council President Todd Gloria will become interim mayor of San Diego, following the resignation of embattled mayor Bob Filner, who announced Friday that he will step down next week as part of a settlement of a lawsuit alleging sexual harassment by no fewer than 18 women. [ Read more → ]
Dantjier Powell

Police identify suspect in slaying of transgender Calif. woman

Friday, August 23, 2013
FONTANA, Calif. -- Police have identified a suspect in the slaying of a transgender woman who was found dead in her Fontana apartment. [ Read more → ]

Transgender woman who appeared in online reality series found murdered

Wednesday, August 21, 2013
FONTANA, Calif. -- A transgender woman was found murdered in her Southern California apartment on Tuesday, with evidence of a violent struggle. [ Read more → ]

Opponents promise legal challenges to new laws protecting LGBT youth

Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Two recently approved measures creating protections for LGBT youth -- one expanding rights for transgender students in California public schools, and another prohibiting gay conversion therapy on minors in New Jersey -- have opponents promising to launch legal challenges to overturn the laws. [ Read more → ]
Rich Pedroncelli, APTim Donnelly

Calif. lawmaker removes son from school over transgender law

Friday, August 16, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A Republican state lawmaker says a new California law allowing transgender students to choose which restroom and locker room they use is part of the reason at least one of his sons will not return to his local public school this fall. [ Read more → ]

BREAKING: Calif. Supreme Court refuses to revive Prop 8 challenge

Wednesday, August 14, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO -- The California Supreme Court refused Wednesday to halt gay marriages in the state, leaving opponents of same-sex weddings few - if any - legal options to stop the unions. [ Read more → ]
Gov. Jerry Brown (D-Calif.)

Calif. governor Jerry Brown signs landmark transgender student rights bill

Monday, August 12, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed the School Success and Opportunity Act into law, a landmark bill to ensure transgender youth have equal opportunities to fully participate and succeed in schools programs across the state. [ Read more → ]
Ernest Dronenburg Jr.

San Diego county clerk withdraws bid to revive Proposition 8

Saturday, August 3, 2013
SAN DIEGO -- San Diego's county clerk, the man charged with issuing marriage licenses there and the most prominent public figure to move against gay marriage in California since its recent resumption, has withdrawn a legal bid to stop the practice, saying he was ceding the fight to a group that already has a similar challenge pending. [ Read more → ]
Ashton Lee

Teen delivers petitions urging Calif. governor to sign transgender school bill

Thursday, August 1, 2013
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A 16-year-old transgender teen from Manteca, Calif., on Wednesday delivered petitions containing more that 6,000 signatures urging Gov. Jerry Brown to sign legislation that would change the way California public schools treat transgender students. [ Read more → ]
San Francisco, Calif.

Man arrested in attack on woman during San Francisco Pride

Wednesday, July 31, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO — San Francisco police have made an arrest in a brutal assault and robbery of a woman during the city's gay pride festivities. [caption id="attachment_105387" align="alignright" width="350"] San Francisco, Calif.[/caption] Police say surveillance video of the June 30 attack shows 23-year-old Oakland resident... [ Read more → ]
Attorney General Kamala Harris (D-Calif.)

Calif. AG says San Diego clerk’s petition to block gay marriage is ‘improper’

Monday, July 29, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO -- California Attorney General Kamala Harris says the elected clerk of San Diego County is improperly using the state's legal system to try to prevent same-sex couples from getting married. [ Read more → ]
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