First marriage for a same-sex couple recognized by Florida

On the heels of the Supreme Court decision that brought marriage equality, Florida also made marriage history. Arlene Goldberg and her late wife, Carol Goldwasser, officially became the first same-sex couple whose marriage is respected by the state.
 
US District Court Judge Robert Hinkle ruled on August 21, 2014 that Florida’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples was unconstitutional and – despite a stay on his ruling –ordered the State of Florida to issue a new death certificate for Carol Goldwasser, naming Arlene Goldberg, her partner of 47 years, as her wife.
 
Today, Arlene received that newly-issued death certificate, making her and her late spouse the first same-sex couple to have their marriage recognized in Florida.
 
“It’s hard to put into words how meaningful this is to me,” said Goldberg. “For 47 years, Carol and I made our lives together, all the while being treated like strangers in the eyes of the law in Florida. It’s bittersweet that Carol isn’t here to share this joy with me, but for the first time in 47 years, our marriage was respected. Our relationship and commitment to each other is finally recognized. ”
 
“Couples shouldn’t have to wait until one spouse dies to receive the recognition and dignity that they deserve,” said Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida. “We share in Arlene’s joy that her marriage to Carol is now recognized, even if only posthumously, but we are more committed than ever to seeing the day when all Florida couples and families are treated fairly and equally.
 
“The Supreme Court has sent a clear message this week that there is no good reason to continue excluding same-sex couples from marriage. It’s time for Governor Scott and Attorney General Bondi to use their power as top elected officials in our state for the good of all Floridians. Families in Florida should not have to wait another day, and we renew our call on them to drop their appeals and let marriage for all couples move forward in the Sunshine State.”