National Center for Lesbian Rights


Month: March 2012

Our Voices blog

Doe v. Jindal

NCLR and other groups filed a friend of the court brief in a groundbreaking case that finally put a stop to Louisiana’s longstanding practice of imposing harsh criminal penalties on people accused of soliciting certain types of sexual conduct with a person of the same sex. People charged under the state’s so-called “Crime Against Nature by Solicitation” (“CANS”) statute had to register as sex offenders, while people engaging in the very same behavior with a different-sex partner were charged...


Separating lesbian mothers from their children violates human rights

No child should ever be separated from her mother just because of her mother’s sexual orientation, but this continues to happen to families around the world. Decades of social science research have shown that a parent’s sexual orientation has absolutely no effect on their ability to be a good parent. But courts still rely on discredited notions that being raised by a lesbian mother is harmful for children. On May 31, 2004, a Chilean Court ordered Karen Atala to give up custody of her three...


Atala Riffo v. Chile

On May 31, 2004, a Chilean Court ordered Karen Atala Riffo, herself a judge in Chile, to relinquish custody of her three children to her estranged husband because she is a lesbian and living with her female partner. The Supreme Court of Chile based its decision on the long-discredited and unsupportable notion that being raised by lesbian parents is harmful for children. With no legal recourse left in Chile, Ms. Atala took her case to the Inter-American Human Rights Commission (IAHCHR) in...


Doe v. Anoka-Hennepin School District No. 11 and E.R. v. Anoka-Hennepin School District No. 11

All students should be able to receive an education in an environment that is safe and inclusive. Unfortunately, many schools in the Anoka-Hennepin School District in Minnesota presented a frightening and harmful toxic environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) students. Many students in the district had been harassed every day by their peers because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender expression. NCLR joined the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC),...


Civil Rights Organizations Announce Agreement to Resolve Anoka-Hennepin School District Bullying Lawsuits

Student Plaintiffs to Hold Press Conference Tuesday (Coon Rapids, Minn. March 5, 2012)—Tonight, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), and the law firms of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP, and Culberth & Lienemann LLP announced an agreement on behalf of six students who filed two federal gender and sexual-orientation harassment lawsuits against Anoka-Hennepin School District. The student plaintiffs, the federal government, and the district have...


NCLR Applauds Maryland’s Marriage Equality Bill Being Signed into Law

Statement by NCLR Executive Director Kate Kendell, Esq. (Annapolis, MD, March 1, 2012)—Today, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley signed HB 438—a bill providing full marriage rights for same-sex couples—into law. Maryland will become the 11th jurisdiction in the country in which same-sex couples can marry when the law goes into effect on January 1, 2013. Opponents have pledged to try to put the new law up for a popular vote before it takes effect. Maryland joins seven other states,...


Supreme Court Rules on Title VII! Give now & Celebrate!