Georgia is the latest state to have its ban on marriage equality challenged in court.
Lamba Legal announced Tuesday that it was challenging the state ban on behalf of three couples and a widow. “Every day that same-sex couples in Georgia are denied the freedom to marry, the government sends a message that their families are not worthy of dignity and respect,” said Tara Borelli, senior attorney in Lambda Legal’s Southern Regional Office. “Georgians believe in the Southern values of love, honor and family, but as long as the State of Georgia continues to bar same-sex couples from marriage, it devalues these families and reinforces unfairness and discrimination.”
One of the couples, lead plaintiffs Christopher Inniss and Shelton Stroman, have been together for 13 years. “Georgia is our home. Our family is here, our business is here, and our community here is a great support for us,” Inniss said in a statement. “Shelton and I have been together for 13 years. We own a home together, we own a business together, and we are raising our son, Jonathan, together. We have done everything we can to protect and take responsibility for our family but marriage is the only way to ensure that we are treated as the family that we are. We need the protection that marriage affords.”
The Washington Post noted earlier this month that bans on equal marriage are currently being challenged in all but a handful of states. With the Georgia suit filed, the number of states with uncontested bans on marriage equality shrunk to just four.