Since its incorporation in 1984, West Hollywood has been one of the most ardent advocates for the legal rights of same-sex couples and the right to marry. On Wednesday, in anticipation of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8, members of the West Hollywood City Council will join with other leaders from the LGBT community for a rally at 5:30 p.m. at the intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and San Vicente Boulevard.
The rally is being organized by American Foundation for Equal Rights, which is the sole sponsor of Hollingsworth v. Perry, the federal constitutional challenge to California’s Prop 8, the 2008 initiative that reinstated a ban on same-sex marriages in the state of California. DOMA is the federal law that blocks legally married gay couples from receiving federal benefits.
Speaking at the community event will be plaintiffs Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, and Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo; plaintiffs’ lead co-counsel Theodore B. Olson and David Boies; AFER co-founder Chad Griffin and AFER executive director Adam Umhoefer.
AFER board member Dustin Lance Black will be master of ceremonies.
In 1984, West Hollywood became the second city in the nation to create a domestic partner registry. In 1985, West Hollywood adopted a Domestic Partnership Ordinance that provided equal rights for domestic partners and married couples in the city. This groundbreaking ordinance provided hospital and jail visitation rights for domestic partners, and protected renters from eviction or rent increases in the event of a partner’s death. In 1985, West Hollywood successfully lobbied to change California state law so that the California Public City Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) would include domestic partners in benefit plans statewide.
West Hollywood was one of the first cities in the country to pass a resolution in support of marriage equality. Since 1995, the City Council has passed almost a dozen resolutions supporting progressive domestic rights initiatives, and condemning the opposite, in various states and on the federal level.
Due to the community event, San Vicente Boulevard between Santa Monica Boulevard and Melrose Avenue will be closed from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Public Parking for the community event will be available at the five-story West Hollywood Park Parking Garage (enter from El Tovar Place at Robertson Boulevard).
For more information on street and facility closures during the community event, call (323) 848-6456 or visit www.weho.org