WJTV News Channel 12 - Cooper won't block ACLU's NC gay marriage ban case

Cooper won't block ACLU's NC gay marriage ban case

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RALEIGH, N.C. -

The North Carolina Attorney General's Office announced Friday that it would not oppose allowing six same-sex couples to amend a 2012 lawsuit challenging the state's ban on second parent adoptions to include additional claims challenging the state's ban on same-sex marriages.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed the 2012 lawsuit in Greensboro on behalf of six same-sex couples and their children, challenging the state's ban on second parent adoption. Second parent adoption is a process by which one partner in an unmarried gay or straight couple adopts the other partner's biological or adoptive child.

Earlier this week the ACLU asked the Attorney General to consent to allow that lawsuit to be amended to include a claim challenging the state's ban on marriage for same-sex couples.

"We are very pleased that the Attorney General's office has agreed to this change," said Chris Brook in a written release, Legal Director of the ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation. "North Carolina's ban on marriage for same-sex couples harms families and children in innumerable ways, from the momentous to the mundane. The loving families in this case want and deserve the security that comes from having a legally recognized family unit, and marriage will strengthen and protect their relationships with each other and their children in a way that nothing else can. We hope the court agrees to this change and allows us to present our case."    

The move to amend the state's lawsuit came less than two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark ruling in another ACLU case which found that the federal Defense of Marriage Act defining marriage as between one man and one woman was unconstitutional.

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