Marriage equality and health

LGBT rights organizations have waged an unprecedented uphill battle against discrimination and bigotry. Graphic provided.

Last June 26, the Supreme Court affirmed the constitutional right to same-sex marriage. In 2003, Massachusetts became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage. LGBT rights organizations, including National Coalition for LGBT Health members, have waged an unprecedented uphill battle against discrimination and bigotry toward our community. Today, against all odds, marriage equality has prevailed.

In affirming the equality of our love, Obergefell v. Hodges upholds our right to marry, and confers a seemingly invaluable level of rights, including hospital visitation rights, adoption rights and protections, spousal insurance coverage, tax benefits, and many other legal claims that will improve not only our health, but our collective well-being. 

As millions of Americans have gained new legal rights that directly impact an individual's or a family's health, the Coalition and its members are committed to ensuring access to culturally competent health care and to decreasing LGBT health disparities through advocacy, education, and research.

While there is much more work to be done to fully defend the justice, liberty, and equality of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, the victory for marriage represents a significant advancement in this noble pursuit.

The National Coalition for LGBT Health, founded in 2000, is dedicated to achieving LGBT health equity. The Coalition is comprised of leaders from national and state LGBT organizations, health centers, health departments, universities, health organizations, clinical and behavioral health providers, and LGBT individuals and allies who are committed to addressing LGBT health. In 2013, the Coalition became an initiative under the auspices of HealthHIV, a longtime Coalition member. For more information, or to join the Coalition, visit or contact Christopher Cannon at


The Gayly- 3/30/2016 @ 9:54 AM CDT