AMA backs same-sex marriage
The American Medical Association (AMA) is lending its seal of approval to same-sex marriage. While unlikely to shift President Obama on the issue, it should give cover to some other politicians and even judges who are on the fence about this important civil-rights issue.
The AMA called laws that are only for opposite-marriages “discriminatory” — the organization views this as a health-related issue.
New York became the sixth state to approve same-sex marriages last week, just in time for massive Pride celebrations in that city.
Freedom to Marry, the Gay & Lesbian Medical Association, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and Equal Rights Washington issued a joint statement lauding the efforts.
Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry, said: “With this deliberate policy statement by the American Medical Association, the nation’s doctors diagnose the pain and injury that exclusion from marriage inflicts on lesbian and gay couples, their children, and loved ones — and make clear that ending marriage discrimination is the cure.”
The policy, H-65.973 Health Care Disparities in Same-Sex Partner Households, was adopted the AMA on June 20. It states:
Our American Medical Association: (1) recognizes that denying civil marriage based on sexual orientation is discriminatory and imposes harmful stigma on gay and lesbian individuals and couples and their families; (2) recognizes that exclusion from civil marriage contributes to health care disparities affecting same-sex households; (3) will work to reduce health care disparities among members of same-sex households including minor children; and (4) will support measures providing same-sex households with the same rights and privileges to health care, health insurance, and survivor benefits, as afforded opposite-sex households. (Modify Current HOD Policy).
Hector Vargas, executive director of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association, said: “GLMA applauds the AMA for recognizing the discrimination, bias and stigma gay and lesbian couples and their families face because they are unable to marry in almost all parts of the country.”
For more on AMA and LGBT issues see http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/about-ama/our-people/member-groups-sections/glbt-advisory-committee/ama-policy-regarding-sexual-orientation.page.
The American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also support marriage equality.