Study shows traditional marriage rates unaffected in states allowing same-sex marriage

Jun 13, 2013

The growing number of same-sex marriage laws in the United States has had no effect on the marriage rate among heterosexual couples according to new findings by researchers at Portland State University's School of Community Health.

The findings contradict statements by opponents of arguing that allowing same-sex couples to marry undermines marriage in general and will discourage heterosexual couples from making that commitment.

"This research shows that increasing legal recognition of same-sex marriage has no effect on rates of opposite-sex marriage in states that passed same-sex marriage laws," said Alexis Dinno, assistant professor of and the lead researcher for the project. "Concerns about potential harm to the rate of opposite-sex marriage resulting from same-sex marriage laws are not borne out by this research."

Dinno and fellow researcher Chelsea Whitney examined heterosexual marriage rates in all 50 states and the District of Columbia from 1989 through 2009. They looked for differences corresponding to years in which Vermont, Massachusetts, California, Iowa and Connecticut passed laws allowing same-sex marriage. They saw no decline in opposite-sex marriage in those states, and in fact found that the marriage rate among was roughly the same as in states without laws allowing same-sex marriage. They obtained the same results for states allowing same-sex , concluding that such laws also have no effect on rates of opposite-sex marriage in those states.

The study comes at a time in which two cases regarding same-sex marriage are being considered in the U.S. Supreme Court. Opponents of same-sex marriage in those cases have argued that states have an interest in defining marriage as between one man and one woman. Eleven currently allow same-sex marriage. Minnesota will become the 12th on Aug. 1. The District of Columbia and three Native American tribes also allow same-sex marriage.

Dinno's article titled "Same Sex Marriage and the Perceived Assault on Opposite Sex " was published Tuesday, June 11, in the academic journal PLOS ONE, available here.

Explore further: Less privileged kids shine at university, according to study

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

US Supreme Court wades into same-sex marriage debate

Dec 12, 2012

The United States Supreme Court has a history of playing a pivotal role in emotive cultural debates including, for example, abortion (Roe v Wade), racial segregation (Brown v Board of Education) and the death penalty (Roper v Simmons). ...

Homosexuality has become an image of modernity in Denmark

Apr 15, 2013

In 1999, Danish homosexuals were granted access to stepchild adoption, and after the 2001 general election, legislation to improve homosexuals' rights was introduced in the Danish Parliament. In the subsequent ...

Survey finds strong support for same-sex marriage

Mar 01, 2013

(Phys.org)—A Brown University survey of Rhode Island voters finds that 60.4 percent of respondents favor extending the right to marry to gay and lesbian couples, a number nearly identical to a survey conducted by Brown ...

Recommended for you

Why are UK teenagers skipping school?

Dec 18, 2014

Analysis of the results of a large-scale survey reveals the extent of truancy in English secondary schools and sheds light on the mental health of the country's teens.

Fewer lectures, more group work

Dec 18, 2014

Professor Cees van der Vleuten from Maastricht University is a Visiting Professor at Wits University who believes that learning should be student centred.

How to teach all students to think critically

Dec 18, 2014

All first year students at the University of Technology Sydney could soon be required to take a compulsory maths course in an attempt to give them some numerical thinking skills. ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Moebius
not rated yet Jun 13, 2013
What did they expect? A boycott?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.