Police, Firefighters Sign Legal Brief In Support Of Same Sex Marriage Challenge
By Mike Perleberg
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – More than 100 first responders are offering their support to a legal challenge to Indiana’s law banning same-sex marriage.
Attorney Karen Celestino-Horseman says the police firefighters, EMTs, and others have signed a friend of the court legal brief that will be filed Tuesday with the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago.
The brief states that although the gay and lesbian emergency workers put their lives on the line for their communities, Indiana denies them equal dignity and respect.
“Indiana and Wisconsin do not treat them equally in their day-to-day work, nor, tragically, in Indiana, even when they make the ultimate sacrifice. Amici submit this brief, therefore, to explain why basic human dignity – enshrined in the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection – requires the rulings of the court below to be affirmed,” the brief reads.
Lawsuits challenging Indiana’s law have previously been merged by the court with a lawsuit against Wisconsin’s marriage law. Last month, 10 states filed a legal brief of their own in support of Indiana and Wisconsin arguing it is not the role of the judicial branch to determine the legality of gay marriage.
The constitutionality of Indiana’s gay marriage ban will be argued in front of the appellate court on Tuesday, August 26. At the request of Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, the court stayed a June ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Richard L. Young to overturn Indiana’s marriage law.
Young’s ruling allowed for a three day period of gay marriages to take place across Indiana before the appeals court stayed the ruling.