Manning leads amicus briefs supporting lawsuits to overturn gay marriage bans

BOWLING GREEN, O.—A new examination into social science research on same-sex marriage shows that children do just as well whether same-sex or heterosexual parents raise them.

Dr. Wendy Manning, professor of sociology at Bowling Green State University and co-director of the National Center for Family and Marriage Research, led the analysis by The American Sociological Association (ASA). Her work was then utilized in an amicus brief supporting efforts to overturn gay marriage bans in Nevada and Hawaii filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. The 9th Circuit is scheduled to hear lawsuits challenging the bans in the coming months.

“At the outset I was not sure what the literature would show in terms of child well-being,” Manning said. “Working with two graduate students we reviewed research published in the last decade and found children raised by same-sex parents fared as well as children raised by different-sex parents.

“Given that nearly one-fifth of same-sex couples are raising children, it is important to include same-sex parent families in studies of the well-being of children.”

“Unsubstantiated fears regarding same-sex parents do not overcome these facts and do not justify upholding the Nevada and Hawaii marriage bans,” states the ASA amicus brief.

This is the second time Manning has led the examination into social science research for an amicus brief. Earlier this year, the ASA weighed in on the gay marriage cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

In its June decision, the Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act, requiring the federal government to recognize same-sex marriages already legalized under the law of several states, and abolished Proposition 8, paving the way for gay couples to once again marry in California.

The amicus brief is part of the ASA’s ongoing effort to ensure that U.S. courts considering lawsuits to legalize gay marriage understand that social science research shows parents’ sexual orientation has no bearing on their children’s well-being.

Updated: 12/02/2017 12:56AM