Supreme Court marriage equality decision is not final victory notes Kary Moss in Detroit News op-ed

July 10, 2015

"Our work is far from over—especially in Michigan," writes Kary L. Moss in her June 29 Detroit News op-ed, "Continue work toward equality." "In some ways, in fact, it's only beginning."

Moss argues that while the Supreme Court marriage equality decision is "a decisive victory for the LGBT movement," Michigan's legal system is still riddled with discriminatory policies. She notes that "a newly married LGBT man or woman could return to work to find he or she no longer has a job," because the state's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, which prohibits firing someone or denying them housing based on several different identity categories, does not protect the LGBT community.

The difficulty of changing gender markers on state identification still opens transgender people to discrimination, and proposed "Religious Freedom Restoration Acts" would allow stores and hospitals to refuse to serve people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. In fact, Moss fears that "we're going to see even more challenges to LGBT equality" in the wake of the Supreme Court decision.

Moss promises that the ACLU of Michigan, which she directs, "will work to defeat harmful RFRA legislation" in the state. While the Supreme Court decision is a reason to celebrate, she writes, the job will not be done "until the day that there is no discrimination anywhere."

Kary L. Moss is a visiting lecturer at the Ford School and the executive director of the ACLU of Michigan.