Supreme Court puts marriage equality on hold in Utah

This morning, the U.S. Supreme Court granted a stay, halting marriage equality in the state of Utah.

Marriages began on December 20, when a U.S. District Court judge ruled that the 2004 constitutional amendment banning marriage for same-sex couples in Utah violated federal guarantees of equal protection. The ruling drew from last summer's Supreme Court ruling striking down section three of the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act." The ruling made Utah the 18th state, plus the District of Columbia, to grant marriage equality to its citizens. Since December 20, hundreds of couples have been married in Utah.

The stay will end marriages for same-sex couples in Utah until the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals rules on the case.

"The Supreme Court’s decision to press the pause button on marriage equality in Utah is a huge disappointment for hundreds of loving and committed couples, whose marriages are now in legal limbo," said Omar Sharif, Jr., GLAAD's National Spokesperson. “By once again denying gay and lesbian Utah couples the vital protections that only marriage can afford,  the Court is putting families at risk and taking a big step backward in ensuring full equality for all Americans."

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GLAAD Southern Stories will elevate the experiences of LGBT people in six of the nation's southern states. The initiative amplifies stories of LGBT people thriving in the South, ongoing discrimination, as well as the everyday indignities endured by LGBT people who simply wish to live the lives they love, including stories of family, stories of faith, stories of sports, and stories of patriotism