The Society for the
Study of Social Issues

APA Monitor: The Defense of Marriage Act and equal protection rights

From The Monitor on Psychology, Judicial Notebook:

"In 1996, the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was signed into law by President Bill Clinton. Section 3 of DOMA states that for the purposes of federal law, the term “marriage” refers to “only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife.” Although some states now recognize marriages between same-sex couples, DOMA prohibits federal recognition of these marriages. Because marriage is a factor in more than 1,000 federal statutes addressing such matters as taxation, immigration, Social Security benefits and health care, the effect of DOMA has been to deny legally married, same-sex spouses the same rights, benefits and privileges that are afforded to opposite-sex spouses (e.g., Massachusetts v. U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Serv., 2010)." Read more....

By Marc W. Pearce, JD, PhD, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and Alex Ingrams, SPSSI Policy Coordinator.


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