Assigned the Resolution number D018 by the General Convention Office today, I am delighted to be part of the team bringing this "Dump DOMA" resolution to the 77th General Convention of the Episcopal Church.
D018 End Discrimination Against Same-Sex Marriages
PROPOSER Russell, The Rev. Cn. Susan
ENDORSED BY Engstrom, The Very Rev. Marilyn; Hopkins, The Very Rev. Michael
Resolved, the House of ______ concurring, That the 77th General Convention urge members of the United States Congress to pass legislation that would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and allow the U.S. federal government to provide benefits to couples in a same-sex marriage.
According to the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), there are 1,138 statutory provisions in which marital status is a factor in determining benefits, rights, and privileges. These rights and responsibilities apply to only male-female couples because the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defines marriage as only between a man and a woman. Currently there are seven states and jurisdictions representing thirteen dioceses where civil marriage is equally available to both opposite and same-sex couples. And a number of federal courts have ruled that DOMA is unconstitutional for failing to provide equal protection and unfairly disadvantaging legally married same-sex couples.
The Episcopal Church has a long history of supporting equal civil protections for same-sex couples, including opposing federal or state constitutional amendments prohibiting same-sex marriage (GC2006-A095). Urging Congress to end discrimination against same-sex marriages is not only in alignment with prior actions of General Convention, it is in alignment with our baptismal promise to strive for justice and to protect the dignity of every human being.