The 44th Annual Chicago Pride Parade was held Sunday on the north side of the city to record attendance. In the estimated crowd of 1 million, four Wexler Wallace employees marched along the parade route. Associates Amy Keller and Amber Nesbitt and paralegals Amy Sayre and Vanessa Romeo walked with the Lambda Legal float in this year’s pride parade.
Lambda Legal is the oldest and largest national legal organization whose mission is to achieve full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV through impact litigation, education, and public policy work. The organization’s Midwest office is located in Chicago and provided a strong contingent in yesterday’s parade. Dozens of people marched with this year’s float, carrying signs and passing out flyers that said “We Are Committed to Winning the Freedom to Marry!”
This year’s parade closely followed two major Supreme Court rulings on marriage equality: United States v. Windsor, which struck down Section 3 of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), and Hollingsworth v. Perry, which found that the proponents of California’s Proposition 8 (a law that effectively banned same-sex marriage) did not have standing to appeal the district court’s order invalidating the ban.
The decisions have wide-reaching and positive implications for same-sex couples across the United States: same-sex couples are able to marry in California, and, as a result of the Windsor ruling, same-sex couples who are legally married must now be treated the same under federal law as married opposite-sex couples. Coincidentally, the Windsor opinion was released by the Supreme Court ten years to the day since Lambda Legal’s landmark victory in Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down all remaining state sodomy laws in 2003, and paved the way for this significant decision.