Statement of John Knight, Director, LGBT Project of the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois

"Today is an historic day for the State of Illinois, and a great victory for thousands of gay and lesbian couples and their families. We applaud the House members who stood up today to the loud voices of a quickly-shrinking minority – who continue to oppose basic fairness for all Illinois’ families.

Because of the hard work of many organizations and individuals, who never lost faith when the House failed to act in May, our State now joins the growing list of those advancing fairness by recognizing the freedom to marry for gay and lesbian couples.

Today’s vote also means that the Illinois General Assembly now recognizes that couples all across Illinois -- including our clients in a court case challenging Illinois' discriminatory marriage law -- deserve the dignity and universal recognition of marriage for their loving committed relationships and their children. The second-class status offered by civil unions demeans these relationships and invites discrimination.

We urge Governor Quinn to quickly sign this historic legislation."

TAKE ACTION: Thank the bill sponsors!