More than 100 people joined Juneau’s Equality for All party on Friday, to celebrate the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act and allowing same-sex married couples equal treatment under federal law.
The celebration featured performances by the Juneau Pride Chorus, a dance group, and other music.
Kimberley Crawford was part of an ad hoc group of nine Juneau residents organizing the celebration.
“We believe it’s important to let everybody know what’s going on. If you’re not directly affected with the Supreme Court decision, you might not necessarily know exactly what’s going on and that’s why we all decided to get together and make this community event.”
Marguerite Crawford says the event was a success.
“It’s really important to get the awareness out to the general public that even though we have come so far with the partial DOMA overruling and Prop 8 that we still don’t have the rights in Alaska and so this is kind of the fun, get the whole community together and to be aware of our situation but have a good time.”
Keynote speaker Joshua Decker is interim executive director of American Civil Liberties Union in Alaska. He says a large part of the celebration is finding out how to advance the fight for marriage equality around the nation and the state.
“This is terrific that everyone here in Juneau is excited about movement towards justice and equality and the hope that Alaska will soon have equal marriage here.”
He will travel to Fairbanks next to continue the education on how recent Supreme Court decisions will impact same-sex couples in Alaska.
- Kids attending the Homer Folk School learn everything from making apple juice to building kayaks.
- Bethel has made more than a quarter of a million dollars from its 12 percent sales tax on alcohol since legal alcohol sales began in April.
- A National Weather Service meteorologist says warm ocean temperatures and less sea ice suggest this year's winter could be close to normal.
- Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has ordered that Native communities and their traditional ecological knowledge be considered in future federal land management decisions.