New & Noteworthy:

Missouri

Missouri is the 24th U.S. state, admitted to the Union on Aug. 10, 1821. Its most populous city is Kansas City, its largest metropolitan area is St. Louis, and the state capitol is located in Jefferson City.

LGBT Rights in Missouri: A constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions was approved by voters in August 2004. Missouri law does not address discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation. Missouri’s hate crimes statutes explicitly address both sexual orientation and gender identity. Missouri has no laws limiting the rights of individuals to adopt children, and there are no explicit prohibitions against second-parent adoption.

Current challenge to Missouri’s same-sex marriage ban: Barrier v. Vasterling

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Mo. bill would make issuing same-sex marriage licenses a fireable offense

Saturday, February 28, 2015
Missouri state capitol in Jefferson City.
A Missouri legislator has introduced a bill that would make it illegal for the state to enforce a marriage other than between a man and a woman and could lead to the firing of government employees who issue such licenses. [...]

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Mo. GOP lawmakers want to intervene in lawsuits, namely same-sex marriage cases

Saturday, February 21, 2015
Missouri state capitol in Jefferson City.
Missouri's Republican Senate leader wants the ability to intervene in lawsuits regarding the constitutionality of state laws, if the attorney general declines to appeal or ask for a stay of a court ruling. [...]

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Missouri Senate panel hears testimony on LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination act

Thursday, February 19, 2015
Missouri state capitol in Jefferson City
A Missouri Senate panel met Wednesday to consider the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act, which would bar discrimination in the state based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, employment and public accommodation. [...]

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University of Missouri adds transgender housing option on campus

Sunday, February 15, 2015
University of Missouri
The University of Missouri's flagship campus in Columbia is testing out a new gender-neutral housing option starting this fall. [...]

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Missouri Supreme Court says lower courts can consider same-sex divorce cases

Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Missouri Supreme Court in Jefferson City, Mo.
A St. Louis County Circuit Court judge should not have dismissed a request to divorce a same-sex couple, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, but didn't decide on the broader issue of whether judges can grant divorces to gay couples. [...]

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Mo. GOP gubernatorial candidate blames ‘sexual permissiveness’ for child porn

Friday, February 6, 2015
Catherine Hanaway
Former Missouri House Speaker and Republican candidate for governor Catherine Hanaway says that a liberal culture of “sexual permissiveness” is responsible for child pornography. [...]

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Appeals court to hear South Dakota, Arkansas, Missouri gay marriage cases

Tuesday, February 3, 2015
gavel
A federal appeals court has agreed to hear arguments this spring from three more states defending their same-sex marriage bans. [...]

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St. Louis Archdiocese opposes hospital group’s benefits for same-sex spouses

Thursday, January 22, 2015
Mercy
Echoing concerns voiced last week by the bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, the Archdiocese of St. Louis is also criticizing a Catholic-based hospital group’s plan to extend benefits to same-sex spouses of employees. [...]

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Springfield, Mo., bishop objects to Catholic hospital’s same-sex benefits

Monday, January 19, 2015
Bishop James Johnston
Bishop James Johnston accuses the hospital system of ignoring the church's stand against same-sex relationships because of "regulations, government funds, and fear of public ridicule." [...]

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Missouri bill would allow Christian college groups to discriminate against gay students

Monday, January 12, 2015
Missouri state capitol in Jefferson City.
A Missouri state lawmaker wants to allow Christian groups to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation on college campuses, while still retaining all the privileges of being a school sanctioned student group. [...]

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