Unmarried Equality

Should unmarried couples have the same rights as married people?

With marriage equality being the law of the land, there’s still a group of people — both gay and straight – who are continuing the fight for equality.

Couples that have no desire to get married.

“We shouldn’t all have to get married to be treated equally,” said Sarah Wright, board chairwoman of Unmarried Equality.

Originally called the Alternatives to Marriage Project, the nonprofit was founded in 1998 by Marshall Miller and Dorian Solot, a straight, unmarried couple. They were frustrated with the discrimination they faced for not being married, including when they tried to lease an apartment together.

As long-time LGBT couples are fully aware, before their right to marriage was affirmed by the Supreme Court, unmarried couples do not have rights to one another’s health insurance, can’t visit each other in the ICU in some hospitals, and do not stand to inherit from their deceased partner.

“The privileges of marriage are entirely unearned,” Wright said. “It’s one choice among many, it’s on the continuum of relationship status, but it’s the one that gets all the attention and all the goodies.”

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