March 3, 2004
ALBANY, N.Y. - Pamela Katz, attorney and associate professor of Political Science and Legal Studies at The Sage Colleges, testified today in support of legislation to recognize same-sex marriages. Katz spoke at the hearing, held by Senator Thomas Duane, on behalf of the Women's Bar Association of New York, of which she is a member. In 1999, Katz authored an article outlining the case for gay marriage in Brooklyn Law School's Journal of Law and Policy.
Same-Sex Marriage is Friendly to Family and Society
In her testimony Katz stated, "The Women's Bar Association of New York supports this bill which is, at its heart, civil rights legislation. … By prohibiting the establishment of a family through the means most widely recognized in our culture, i.e. marriage, New York State effectively prohibits full participation in American society for lesbian and gay New Yorkers and their children." Katz went on to outline the importance of the family unit, "For its members-spouses, parents, children-it provides emotional support, security, commitment and a sense of belonging. It cannot be disputed that sexual orientation is irrelevant to the enjoyment of these basic human rights. ... The state interest in a stable society is furthered when families are established and remain intact. This is true regardless of the gender of the spouses."
About The Sage Colleges
The Sage Colleges was founded in 1916 and comprises Russell Sage College for women in Troy, N.Y., and the coeducational Sage Graduate School and Sage College of Albany. The Sage Colleges is a member of the Associated New American Colleges, a group of small- to medium-sized comprehensive private colleges and universities dedicated to integrating liberal and professional studies.