Marriage Equality USA is the name of an organisation which was founded in 1996, also known by its acronym MEUSA. It is a registered non-profit organisation run by volunteers with the purpose of promoting equality for the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer) community. Their purpose is to see equal marriage rights being afforded to LGBTQ couples and families.
In the USA and beyond
As of July 2015, all fifty states of the USA have equal marriage rights for same-sex as well as opposite-sex couples. On 26th June 2015 the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in favour of marriage equality, according to a majority opinion. This resulted in not only equal rights but also equal protection within the marriage union. Besides the USA, there are numerous other countries in the world which allow same-sex couples to marry. These include, among others, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, South Africa, Uruguay, New Zealand and Canada.
One area which is of great significance to any married couple is that of finances, and the aspect of sharing finances in marriage. In the USA, there are a considerable number of Federal benefits and responsibilities which are applicable only to married people. When it comes to things such as pension and social security, spouses can benefit financially. A married couple is treated as a unit in terms of joint tax returns, and joint insurance policies.
Studies and research have shown that married people tend to enjoy emotional benefits and live longer than those who are not married. It is believed that withholding the right to be married is detrimental to the mental health of same-sex couples. Now with marriage equality they can enjoy the same kind of status, security and recognition as their opposite-sex counterparts.
Benefits for children
In the Supreme Court ruling, the obvious inability of same-sex couples to produce children was not deemed as sufficient reason not to marry, and the ruling included the aim of protecting children obtained by other means in a same-sex marriage. Studies have shown that it is generally beneficial for a child to have parents with a legally recognized relationship which includes legal benefits and legal protection.