Ohio

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LGBT rights in Ohio
Ohio (USA)
Ohio (USA)
Same-sex sexual activity legal? Legal since 1974
Gender identity/expression State does not alter sex on birth certificates for transsexuals
Recognition of
relationships
None statewide; Same-sex marriage recognized (for death certificate purposes only)[1]
Restrictions:
Ohio State Issue 1 limits marriage to man/woman, places restrictions on non-marriage types of same-sex unions
Adoption Stepparent adoption illegal
Discrimination protections Sexual orientation protections in state employment

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons in the state of Ohio face challenges in having gay marriage legally recognized in the state of Ohio.

Laws against same-sex sexual activity[edit source | visual editor]

Ohio adopted its first sodomy law in 1885 and revised it to include fellatio in 1889. It became the eighth state to repeal its sodomy statute on December 22, 1972. It remained a misdemeanor to propose sodomy to another person, but in 1979 a state court decision narrowed that provision to cover only cases in which the proposition was "unwelcome".[2]

Recognition of same-sex relationships[edit source | visual editor]

Marriage[edit source | visual editor]

HB 272 - Defense of Marriage Act

Introduced in the State House of Representatives by Rep. Bill Seitz, the bill was signed by Governor Taft on February 6, 2004. It was opposed by many Democrats in the senate, joined by four Republicans, and the UCC. It passed the house by 73-23 and the Senate 18-15.

The bill was passed in the aftermath of the 'Goodridge' decision in Massachusetts.

Issue 1

Issue 1 was an initiated constitutional amendment approved by a margin of 61%-38%. Governor Taft and Rep. Bill Seitz both opposed the amendment in the grounds it was too vague. It amended Article XV, Section 11 to eliminate gay and lesbians the state constitutional right to marry the person of their choice.

Official supporters were Ohio Campaign to Protect Marriage and the Traditional Marriage Crusade. Ohioans for Fairness led the ad hoc defense against the amendment.

Obergefell v. Wymyslo

On April 14, 2014, Judge Timothy Black, of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, declared Ohio's ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional and that Ohio must recognize same-sex marriages from other jurisdictions in Obergefell v. Wymyslo .[3] On April 16, 2014, he stayed enforcement of his ruling except for the death certificates sought by the plaintiffs.[4] The case is currently being appealed by state Attorney General Mike DeWine.[5]

Domestic partnerships[edit source | visual editor]

Map of Ohio counties, cities, and villages that offer domestic partner benefits either county-wide or in particular cities.
  City or village offers domestic partner benefits
  County-wide partner benefits through domestic partnership
  County, city, or village does not offer domestic partner benefits

Nine cities, village of Yellow Springs, and the counties of Cuyahoga and Franklin offer domestic partnership registries in Ohio.

Parenting[edit source | visual editor]

Single homosexual individuals are permitted to adopt in Ohio.[6] Despite no explicit prohibition, courts have not allowed same-sex couples to do so. Second-parent adoptions are only available to someone recognized by the state as the spouse of the first parent.

Discrimination protections[edit source | visual editor]

Map of Ohio counties, cities, and villages that have sexual orientation and/or gender identity anti–employment discrimination ordinances
  Sexual orientation and gender identity with anti–employment discrimination ordinance
  Sexual orientation and gender identity solely in public employment
  Sexual orientation in public employment

Discrimination based on sexual orientation, but not gender identity, is prohibited within state employment by an executive order issued by Governor John Kasich on January 21, 2011.[7] There are no statewide protections in Ohio for sexual orientation and gender identity outside of state employment.

Twenty-nine Ohio cities and counties have anti-discrimination ordinances prohibiting discrimination of the basis of sexual orientation.[8]

Hate crime[edit source | visual editor]

Ohio's hate crime laws address violence based on race, color, religion or national origin, but not on sexual orientation or gender identity.[9]

Freedom of expression[edit source | visual editor]

In 2012, 16 year-old high school student Maverick Couch, represented by Lambda Legal, sued the Waynesville Local School District after being told he could not come to school wearing a t-shirt with the words "Jesus is not a homophobe". The board explained their position, “Wayne Local School District Board of Education had the right to limit clothing with sexual slogans, especially in light what was then a highly charged atmosphere, in order to protect its students and enhance the educational environment. Consequently, the high school principal was well within the bounds of his authority to request that the student remove his T-shirt and refrain from wearing the T-shirt in the future.”.[10] The suit ended in a judgement in federal court in Cincinnati agreed to by all parties to the suit that affirmed Couch's right to wear the shirt to school and ordered the school district to pay $20,000 in damages and legal fees.[11][12]

Gender reassignment[edit source | visual editor]

Following a 1987 court case, In re Ladrach, Ohio does not allow persons born in the state to amend the sex information on their birth certificates following sex reassignment surgery.[13]

See also[edit source | visual editor]

Ohio portal
Thank You
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MAP Equality Map[edit source | visual editor]

Organizations[edit source | visual editor]

LGBT organizations[edit source | visual editor]

LGBT community centers[edit source | visual editor]

LGBT events[edit source | visual editor]

LGBT youth organizations[edit source | visual editor]

Higher education LGBT resource offices[edit source | visual editor]

Anti-LGBT Industry[edit source | visual editor]

References[edit source | visual editor]

  1. Amanda Lee Myers (2013-12-23). "Federal judge weakens Ohio's ban on gay marriage". The Columbus Dispatch. Retrieved 2014-06-29. 
  2. Eskridge, William N. (2008). Dishonorable Passions: Sodomy Laws in America, 1861-2003. NY: Viking Penguin. pp. 49, 50, 180. 
  3. Myers, Amanda Lee (April 14, 2014). "Judge: Ohio must recognize other states' gay marriages". USA Today. Retrieved April 14, 2014. 
  4. Snow, Justin (April 16, 2014). "Federal judge grants partial stay in Ohio marriage-ban ruling". Metro Weekly. Retrieved April 16, 2014. 
  5. "Welcome to A.M. Equality - April 30, 2014". Athleteforequality.org. Retrieved 2014-06-29. 
  6. "Ohio Adoption Law | Human Rights Campaign". Hrc.org. December 14, 2009. Retrieved November 2, 2013. 
  7. "Establishing an Anti-Discrimination Policy in State Government Employment". Order 2011-05K, January 21, 2011. State of Ohio. Retrieved December 15, 2012. 
  8. "Anti-discrimination Ordinances in Ohio". ACLU of Ohio. Retrieved April 21, 2013. 
  9. Vindy: "Ohio’s hate-crime law falls short — as incidents reveal", accessed February 16, 2014
  10. Martin, Shawn (April 4, 2012). "Ohio teen Maverick Couch takes school to court over 'Jesus is not a homophobe' shirt". ABC15. Retrieved December 15, 2012. 
  11. Budd, Lawrence (May 4, 2012). "District proposes T-shirt case settlement". The Western Star. Retrieved December 15, 2012. 
  12. Michael, Gryboski (May 22, 2012). "Court Judgment: Ohio Student Can Wear 'Jesus Is Not a Homophobe' Shirt,". Christian Post. Retrieved December 15, 2012. 
  13. Levi, Jennifer L.; Monnin-Browder, Elizabeth E., eds. (2012). Transgender Family Law: A Guide to Effective Advocacy. Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse. pp. 59n58.