WASHINGTON—The American Psychological Association praised today’s U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling upholding a U.S. District Court’s 2010 decision overturning Proposition 8. APA had filed a brief in the case (Perry vs. Brown) providing the scientific research relevant to the association’s support for marriage equality for same-sex couples. Proposition 8 took away the right of same-sex couples to marry in California that had been granted by the state Supreme Court in 2008.
“Research shows that marriage provides important health and wellness benefits and that same-sex couples are similar to heterosexual couples in essential ways including the fact that they are just as likely as opposite-sex couples to raise mentally healthy, well-adjusted children,” said APA President Suzanne Bennett Johnson, PhD. “There is no scientific basis for denying marriage equality to same-sex couples.”
APA, the largest professional society representing psychology, has been a strong advocate for full equal rights for LGBT people for 35 years, based on the social science research on sexual orientation. APA has supported legal benefits for same-sex couples since 1997 and civil marriage for same-sex couples since 2004. APA has adopted policy statements, including most recently the 2010 Resolution on Marriage Equality for Same-Sex Couples, lobbied Congress in opposition to the Defense of Marriage Act and the Federal Marriage Amendment, and filed amicus briefs supporting same-sex marriage in legal cases in Oregon, Washington, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Connecticut, Iowa, and California.
The American Psychological Association, in Washington, D.C., is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States and is the world’s largest association of psychologists. APA’s membership includes more than 154,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance psychology as a science, as a profession and as a means of promoting health, education and human welfare.