Netherlands became first jurisdiction to allow same-sex marriage

On April 1, 2001, the Netherlands became the first jurisdiction in the world to legalize same-sex marriage. Since then, the Netherlands has been joined by Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal, Iceland, Argentina and Mexico City in legalizing same-sex marriage. In the US, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire and the District of Columbia have legalized same-sex marriage, either through judicial or legislative action. California also allowed the marriages briefly until the passage of Proposition 8 in a statewide referendum. Proposition 8, in turn, was struck down by a federal judge as a violation of the guarantees of due process and equal protection under the US Constitution. The case is currently on appeal in the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.


Dutch coat of arms

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