Illinois is the 21st U.S. state, admitted to the Union on December 3, 1818. Its most populous city is Chicago, and the state capitol is located in Springfield.

LGBT Rights in Illinois: Same-sex marriage becomes legal in Illinois on June 1, 2014, under a bill passed in the state legislature and signed by Gov. Pat Quinn on Nov. 20, 2013. Illinois has protected LGBT persons from discrimination since 2006, based on legislation enacted in 2005. Illinois has recognized hate crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual, or heterosexual persons since 2001. The law does not protect attacks based on gender identity as such, but gender identity cases can be prosecuted as perceived sexual orientation cases since the state criminalizes attacks based on one's actual or perceived sexual orientation. The state permits adoption by gay individuals or partners, including second-parent adoptions.

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Kyle McCarter

GOP lawmakers propose bills to amend, repeal marriage equality in Illinois

Friday, January 24, 2014
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Two Republican lawmakers have already proposed bills to amend or repeal Illinois’ recently approved marriage equality law before it is set to take effect in June. [ Read more → ]
Daily HeraldSusanne Atanus

Candidate: Autism, dementia are God’s punishment for abortion, gay marriage

Thursday, January 23, 2014
CHICAGO – A Republican candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives says that autism and dementia are punishments from God, who is angry over abortion and same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Jim Walder

Ill. innkeeper expects more legal troubles when he refuses to host gay weddings

Tuesday, January 21, 2014
PAXTON, Ill. — The owner of an Illinois inn who is the subject of a civil rights complaint for refusing to host same-sex civil union ceremonies, says he will refuse to allow same-sex weddings when the state's marriage equality law takes effect in June. [ Read more → ]
Staci Michelle Yandle

Obama nominates out lesbian attorney to federal court in Illinois

Friday, January 17, 2014
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has nominated out lesbian attorney Staci Michelle Yandle to serve in the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, the White House announced on Thursday. [ Read more → ]
The Illinois House votes 61-54 to legalize same-sex marriage.

Retaliation for same-sex marriage support not a 2014 Ill. primary issue – yet

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
CHICAGO -- When Illinois lawmakers considered a landmark vote on same-sex marriage, religious and conservative groups vowed to retaliate against those who voted in favor by grooming potential primary challengers in next year's elections. [ Read more → ]
Photos: Charles Rex Arbogast, APPatricia Ewert, left, and Vernita Gray, right, stand before Cook County Judge Patricia Logue, center, as she presides over their wedding ceremony.

Judge OKs Illinois same-sex marriages in cases of life-threatening illnesses

Monday, December 16, 2013
CHICAGO -- Gay couples who want to wed immediately in Illinois because one partner has a life-threatening illness could do so starting Monday, rather than waiting until the state's same-sex law takes effect in June. [ Read more → ]
Photos: Charles Rex Arbogast, APPatricia Ewert, left, and Vernita Gray, right, stand before Cook County Judge Patricia Logue, center, as she presides over their wedding ceremony.

Bill allowing Ill. gay weddings to take effect sooner than June may see vote

Thursday, November 28, 2013
CHICAGO -- A same-sex couples' expedited marriage license could mean the start of other efforts to move up the effective date of Illinois' new same-sex marriage law. [ Read more → ]
Charles Rex Arbogast, APHolding their Illinois marriage license, Vernita Gray, left, and Patricia Ewert kiss after they were married by Cook County Judge Patricia Logue, the first gay marriage in Illinois, at the couple's home Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013, in Chicago.

Terminally ill woman, partner exchange vows in Illinois’ first same-sex wedding

Wednesday, November 27, 2013
CHICAGO -- Two Chicago women on Wednesday became the first same-sex couple to say their vows in Illinois after a federal judge granted an expedited marriage license because of one woman's ailing health. [ Read more → ]
Timmy Samuel, Courtesy of Starbelly Studios (AP)This June 2011photo provided by Starbelly Studios in Chicago shows Vernita Gray, left, and Patricia Ewert smiling during their civil union ceremony at Millennium Park in Chicago.

Terminally ill woman, partner to be first same-sex couple to marry in Illinois

Wednesday, November 27, 2013
CHICAGO -- Even as they celebrated their home state becoming the 16th to legalize same-sex marriage, Chicago couple Vernita Gray and Patricia Ewert couldn't help but feel bitter disappointment: Marriages cannot legally start in Illinois until June 1, 2014, a day one of them might not live to see. [ Read more → ]

Judge orders expedited marriage license so terminally ill woman can wed partner

Monday, November 25, 2013
CHICAGO -- The U.S. District Court in Chicago has ordered Cook County's clerk to issue a marriage license to a same-sex couple, one of whom is terminally ill. [ Read more → ]
M. Spencer Green, APIllinois Gov. Pat Quinn, center, signs the state's Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act into law, making Illinois the 16th state in the nation to embrace full marriage equality for same sex couples, Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013, in Chicago.

Illinois governor Pat Quinn signs marriage equality bill into law

Wednesday, November 20, 2013
CHICAGO -- Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation Wednesday allowing same-sex weddings starting this summer, making President Barack Obama's home state the 16th overall - and largest in the nation's heartland - to legalize gay marriage. [ Read more → ]
Pat Quinn

Illinois governor to sign marriage equality bill into law

Wednesday, November 20, 2013
CHICAGO -- When Gov. Pat Quinn signs a landmark law allowing same-sex marriage in the state, he'll be incorporating a piece of Illinois history. [ Read more → ]
Cardinal Francis George

Cardinal George blasts gay marriage in letter to all Chicago-area Catholics

Sunday, November 17, 2013
CHICAGO -- One of the most high-profile religious leaders who opposed Illinois' new same-sex marriage legislation says the law will have consequences for the church and society. [ Read more → ]
Bishop Thomas John Paprocki

Ill. Catholic bishop to hold gay marriage ‘exorcism’ when governor signs bill

Thursday, November 14, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- A Roman Catholic bishop in Illinois said Thursday he will preside over a prayer service of “supplication and exorcism” next week to coincide with they ceremony in which Gov. Pat Quinn will sign the state's marriage equality bill into law. [ Read more → ]
Seth Perlman, APRandy Hannig, center, of Equality Illinois, hands out shirts supporting gay marriage and explains how people can help support the cause during the Illinois State Fair in Springfield, Ill. on August 14.

Lawsuit challenging Ill. same-sex marriage ban on hold

Thursday, November 14, 2013
CHICAGO -- A lawsuit challenging Illinois' ban on gay marriage is on hold until newly approved legislation allowing same-sex marriage takes effect next summer. [ Read more → ]

Catholic Church yanks YMCA grant over relationship with pro-gay marriage group

Tuesday, November 12, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The Catholic Church is rescinding a $60,000 grant to the University YMCA in Champaign, Ill., because the organization has refused to cut ties with an LGBT support group that backs same-sex marriage in Illinois. [ Read more → ]

Illinois approval of same-sex marriage could influence proposed ban in Indiana

Friday, November 8, 2013
INDIANAPOLIS — Opponents of a push to amend Indiana's constitution to ban same-sex marriage say Illinois lawmakers' approval of marriage equality is a big victory that could help their cause. [ Read more → ]
Patrick Bova and Jim Darby, lead plaintiffs in the Lambda Legal suit, entered into a civil union in 2011.

Judge issues stay of Illinois same-sex marriage lawsuit

Friday, November 8, 2013
CHICAGO -- A Cook County judge has issued a temporary stay of a lawsuit that challenged Illinois' ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Gov. Pat Quinn (D-Ill.)

Gov. Quinn to sign Illinois marriage equality bill Nov. 20

Thursday, November 7, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Gov. Pat Quinn says he's planning to sign same-sex marriage legislation on Nov. 20 in Chicago. [ Read more → ]
Naomi Jakobsson

Ill. lawmaker: Son would be proud I voted for gay marriage in his final hours

Thursday, November 7, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- An Illinois lawmaker says her late son would be proud that she returned to the state capitol to vote for same-sex marriage in his last hours. [ Read more → ]
Seth Perlman, APMarriage equality supporters at a rally in Springfield, Ill., on Monday, the day before lawmakers passed a bill to legalize same-sex marriage.

Wedding plans get underway as Illinois same-sex couples gear up for marriage

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Just a few hours after state lawmakers approved same-sex marriage in Illinois, Chicago wedding planner Lindsay Parrott started getting her first inquiries for summer weddings. [ Read more → ]
Sam Yingling

Ill. lawmaker proposes to partner just hours after gay marriage bill passes

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- An Illinois lawmaker is engaged to his partner just hours after the state Legislature approved same-sex marriage legislation. [ Read more → ]
Pat Quinn

Quinn will sign Illinois marriage equality bill this month

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Gov. Pat Quinn says he'll sign legislation allowing same sex couples in Illinois to marry this month. [ Read more → ]
Michael R. Schmidt, Sun-Times Media/APChicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is greeted Tuesday evening as he joins revelers at Sidetrack, a well-known gay bar in Chicago's Boystown neighborhood, where celebrations were taking place after the state Legislature in Springfield voted to legalize same-sex marriage.

Chicago mayor celebrates passage of marriage bill with visit to gay bar

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
CHICAGO -- Celebrations in Chicago for the state's newly approved same-sex marriage law included a visit by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to a well-known gay bar in the city's Boystown neighborhood. [ Read more → ]

Obama applauds Ill. General Assemby on passage of marriage equality bill

Tuesday, November 5, 2013
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has released a statement, applauding the passage of marriage equality in Illinois. [ Read more → ]
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