Suit Seeks Same-Sex Marriages

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June 28, 2002


"When Marcye and Karen Nicholson-McFadden had a baby two years ago, the lesbian couple struggled to keep hospital staff aware of their decadelong partnership during the difficult delivery. As they prepare for another child, the Aberdeen parents want legal recognition: a marriage certificate that would protect their children, the home and business they built together, and would allow Marcye or Karen to make emergency decisions regarding each other's lives.

"But the state of New Jersey won't allow it.

"...Represented by Lambda Legal, a national gay and lesbian civil-rights group, the plaintiffs hope to erase barriers that block them from the health insurance, tax breaks, inheritance rights and child protections enjoyed by heterosexual couples.

"We're here because we live each and every day like a married couple," Karen Nicholson-McFadden added. "But our relationship is continuously cheapened and discounted because we are denied the right to be married."