Massachusetts is the 6th U.S. state, admitted to the Union on Feb 6, 1788. Its capital and most populous city is Boston.

LGBT Rights in Massachusetts: Massachusetts became the first U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage following a state Supreme Judicial Court ruling on Nov. 18, 2003. The law took effect on May 17, 2004. Massachusetts prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation in credit, public and private employment, union practices, housing, and public accommodations, and on the basis of gender identity and expression in credit, public and private employment, union practices and housing. State law protects against hate crimes based on both sexual orientation and gender identity. State law prohibits adoption discrimination against gays.

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Massachusetts congressional delegation releases ‘It Gets Better’ video

Thursday, July 28, 2011
The Massachusetts congressional delegation on Wednesday released their video contribution to the "It Gets Better Project," aimed at inspiring LGBT youth facing adversity and depression. [ Read more → ]

Massachusetts study finds alarming trend in homelessness among LGBTQ youth

Saturday, July 23, 2011
In a study published online Thursday by the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at Boston's Children's Hospital, researchers found that that 25 percent of gay and lesbian public high school students in Massachusetts were homeless. [ Read more → ]
John Kerry

Sen. John Kerry discuss his ‘evolution’ on marriage equality

Monday, July 11, 2011
Sen. John Kerry: "These seven years of marriage equality in Massachusetts might as well have been 30 years: they erased decades of myths." [ Read more → ]

Cambridge, Mass., to reimburse gay employees for unfair federal tax

Monday, July 11, 2011
The city of Cambridge, Mass., said it will reimburse nearly two dozen gay public employees to offset the cost of a federal tax that city officials call unfair. [ Read more → ]

Boston Red Sox: ‘It’s OK to be your own unique being’

Sunday, July 3, 2011
The Boston Red Sox on Friday joined the “It Gets Better Project” and “The Trevor Project” in producing a video to inspire hope for young people who may be struggling adversity and intolerance. [ Read more → ]

Nine arrested, face hate crime charges in attack on Massachusetts gay man

Thursday, June 30, 2011
Nine youths ranging in age from 12 to 19 have been arrested and are facing hate crime charges in the beating and robbing of an openly gay man in Massachusetts earlier this week. [ Read more → ]

Church holds sidewalk prayer service to protest cancellation of gay pride mass

Sunday, June 19, 2011
Parishioners of a Boston church on Sunday gathered on the sidewalk for a prayer service in protest of the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston's decision to cancel a gay pride Mass themed “All are Welcome." [ Read more → ]

Catholic Archdiocese orders cancellation of Mass commemorating Boston Pride

Sunday, June 12, 2011
The Catholic Archdiocese of Boston has ordered a local church to cancel a Mass scheduled for next weekend themed “All are Welcome,” caving to criticism that the church was sanctioning a celebration of LGBT Pride month. [ Read more → ]

Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox announce plans to produce ‘It Gets Better’ videos

Sunday, June 5, 2011
The Chicago Cubs and the Boston Red Sox have announced that they will each produce an online video for the “It Gets Better Project,” an anti-bullying project aimed at helping LGBT youth struggling with adversity and intolerance. [ Read more → ]
Gov. Duval Patrick and Barbara Lenk

Lesbian judge confirmed to Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court

Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Appeals Court Judge Barbara A. Lenk has won confirmation by the Governor's Council to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court after a 5-3 vote, and becomes the first openly gay judge to serve on the state's highest court. [ Read more → ]
Barney Frank

Barney Frank’s Playboy interview: ‘Anti-gay prejudice is on its way out’

Sunday, April 17, 2011
Congressman Barney Frank (D-Mass.), one of only four openly gay lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives, gives a candid interview with Playboy magazine. [ Read more → ]
Gov. Deval Patrick (left) and Justice Baraba Lenk

Massachusetts Governor nominates first gay justice to state’s highest court

Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick on Monday tapped Associate Justice Barbara A. Lenk to be his fourth pick for the state's Supreme Judicial Court, and the court's first openly gay nominee. [ Read more → ]

Massachusetts Governor signs order to protect transgender state workers

Saturday, February 19, 2011
BOSTON -- In a private ceremony this week, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) signed an executive order prohibiting discrimination of state employees based on gender identity or expression. [ Read more → ]
Mitchell Reich

‘Harvard Law Review’ elects first openly gay president

Tuesday, February 8, 2011
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Mitchell Reich, a second year at Harvard Law School, has been elected the first openly gay president of the Harvard Law Review, a journal of legal scholarship published by an independent student group at Harvard Law School. [ Read more → ]

DOJ says ‘Defense of Marriage Act’ justified to prevent ‘inequities’

Friday, January 14, 2011
The U.S. Department of Justice filed its brief Thursday with a federal appeals court that will hear the government’s appeal of two district court decisions that found the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. [ Read more → ]

LGBT library books doused with urine was an ‘accident,’ says Harvard dean

Tuesday, December 14, 2010
On Monday morning we reported that dozens of books dealing with LGBT subject matter, were vandalized at a Harvard library with what appeared to be urine. But now the college has announced the damaged books were the result of an "accident," and not a suspected hate crime as University police originally suspected. [ Read more → ]
Harvard's Lamont Library

Harvard College investigating vandalized LGBT books as hate crime

Monday, December 13, 2010
At least 40 books at a Harvard University library dealing with LGBT subject matter have been vandalized with what appeared to be urine, and University police are investigating the incident as a hate crime. [ Read more → ]

Justice department will appeal ruling that struck down ‘Defense of Marriage Act’

Tuesday, October 12, 2010
On the last possible day they could do so, the Obama administration filed a notice of appeal with the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts in support of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, even though Obama has previously said he opposed the law. [ Read more → ]

Catholic high school dean loses job after marrying her partner

Monday, September 6, 2010
The athletic director and dean of students at a Catholic high school in Springfield, MA lost her job last week, saying she was pressured to leave after marrying her female partner in August. [ Read more → ]
Yakovleff (left) and Odegard

Boston man gets life in prison in stabbing death of gay hairstylist

Monday, March 1, 2010
A Boston man was found guilty Friday of murdering a popular hairstylist he met at a gay bar in 2008 and was immediately sent to prison for life without parole. [caption id="attachment_6641" align="aligncenter" width="375" caption="Yakovleff (left) and Odegard"][/caption] Following six days of deliberations, the jury... [ Read more → ]

Openly gay Republican picked for GOP ticket in MA governor’s race

Monday, November 23, 2009
A Republican political hopeful interested in serving as governor of Massachusetts announced Monday he has chosen Richard R. Tisei, an openly gay state legislator, to be his running mate in the 2010 gubernatorial election, reports CBS News. "Want you to be the first to know:... [ Read more → ]

Justice department defends DOMA in Massachusetts court

Friday, October 30, 2009
MSNBC. Though the Obama administration calls the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) discriminatory, the Justice Department nonetheless is defending the law in a court filing today in Massachusetts. The state has challenged the law, which denies federal marriage benefits to same-sex couples who are... [ Read more → ]

Justice department reluctantly defends ‘Defense of Marriage Act’

Saturday, September 19, 2009
BOSTON -- Justice Department lawyers are reluctantly defending the federal law that prevents recognition of same-sex marriages, making their legal arguments in a Boston court while pointing out that the Obama administration opposes the measure, the Boston Globe reports. On Friday, Justice attorneys asked a... [ Read more → ]

Rachel Maddow: gay marriage is a ‘defense of marriage’ act

Friday, September 4, 2009
It's been five years since Massachusetts became the first state to legalize gay marriage, and as Rachel Maddow points out, despite all the fear, the sky didn't fall. In fact, divorce rates are down to pre-1940's level, and Massachusetts now boasts the lowest divorce rates... [ Read more → ]
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