Reaction to Petition for Arizona Civil Partnerships
John Allard - firstname.lastname@example.org
Phoenix, AZ: On Monday, January 26, 2009, "Yes for Arizona Civil Partnerships" ignored the advice and recommendations of Arizona LGBT community leaders and filed an application with the Arizona Secretary of State for an Initiative Petition Serial Number. We definitely sympathize with the frustration the backers of the Arizona Civil Partnership Proposition are feeling. A constitutional amendment was just passed in our state that is unconstitutional, stripping Arizona citizens of access to basic rights.
One of our concerns is that civil unions have been shown to set up a system of ‘separate but unequal.’ The New Jersey Civil Union Review Commission report detailed several ways in which civil unions failed to provide equal status to that of marriage. While being questioned at a meeting of the Tempe Gay Straight Alliance on Wednesday, January 28, 2009, Phillip Cotton, the author of the proposed amendment to the Arizona Constitution, acknowledged that LGBT couples joined in civil unions in other states had experienced discrimination as second citizens based upon the civil union designation of their relationship.
The Arizona Chapter of Marriage Equality USA will continue to work for access to full civil marriage equality. We are speaking with citizens across Arizona regarding the right to full marriage equality. We look forward to continuing to work toward this goal in a concerted, unified, strategic way that includes the entire LGBTIQ population and our allies.
Founded in 2000, Marriage Equality USA is a national grassroots organization whose mission is to secure legally recognized civil marriage equality for all, at the federal and state level, without regard to gender identity or sexual orientation. For more information go to www.marriageequality.org.