LGBTQ Rights Movement

  • The Society for Human Rights

    Located in Chicago, becomes the country's earliest known gay rights organization.
  • Alfred Kinsey publishes Sexual Behavior in the Human Male

    Revealed to the public that homosexuality is far more widespread than was commonly believed.
  • The Mattachine Society is formed

    The first national gay rights organization - formed by Harry Hay -considered by many to be the founder of the gay rights movement.
  • The Daughters of Bilitis founded

    a pioneering national lesbian organization
  • National Transsexual Counseling Unit is established

    The world's first the transgender organization was established in San Francisco
  • The Stonewall Riots

    Transform the gay rights movement from one limited to a small number of activists into a widespread protest for equal rights and acceptance. Patrons of a gay bar in New York's Greenwich Village, the Stonewall Inn, fight back during a police raid, sparking three days of riots.
  • Homosexuality no longer considered a mental disorder.

    The American Psychiatric Association removes homosexuality from its official list of mental disorders.
  • Save Our Children Campaign

    Activists in Miami, Florida pass a civil rights ordinance making sexual orientation discrimination illegal in Dade County. Save Our Children, a campaign by a Christian fundamentalist group and headed by singer Anita Bryant, is launched in response to the ordinance. In the largest special election of any in Dade County history, 70% vote to overturn the ordinance. It is a crushing defeat for gay activists.
  • Harvey Milk is sworn in as a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors

    Milk begins his term by sponsoring a civil rights bill that outlaws sexual orientation discrimination. Only one supervisor votes against it and Mayor Moscone signs it into law. He was assassinated later that year on November 27.
  • Proposition 6 is rejected by voters

    This proposal would fire any teacher or school employee who publicly supports gay rights.
  • National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights in Washington, D.C.

    About 75,000 people participated. It was the largest political gathering in support of LGBT rights to date.
  • Wisconsin outlaws discrimination of sexual orientation

    Wisconsin becomes the first state to outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation
  • Berkeley offers employees domestic-partnership benefits

    The city of Berkeley, California, becomes the first city to offer its employees domestic-partnership benefits
  • "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy

    The “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” policy is instituted for the U.S. military, permitting gays to serve in the military but banning homosexual activity.
  • Romer v. Evans

    the Supreme Court strikes down Colorado's Amendment 2, which denied gays and lesbians protections against discrimination, calling them “special rights.”
  • Vermont legally recognizes civil unions between gay or lesbian couples

    The first state in the country to do this, the law states that these “couples would be entitled to the same benefits, privileges, and responsibilities as spouses.” It stops short of referring to same-sex unions as marriage, which the state defines as heterosexual.
  • Lawrence v. Texas

    The U.S. Supreme Court rules that sodomy laws in the U.S. are unconstitutional.
  • Same-sex marriages become legal in Massachusetts

  • Gain equal rights in the workplace

    The House of Representatives approves a bill ensuring equal rights in the workplace for gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals.
  • Valid same sex marriages & registering as domestic partners

    A New York State appeals court unanimously votes that valid same-sex marriages performed in other states must be recognized by employers in New York, granting same-sex couples the same rights as other couples.The state of Oregon passes a law that allows same-sex couples to register as domestic partners allowing them some spousal rights of married couples.
  • Same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry

    Ruled by the California Supreme Court
  • Same-sex couples gain right to marry in Conneticut

    The Supreme Court of Connecticut rules that same-sex couples have the right to marry
  • Same-sex marriage and adoption rights banned in some states

    Voters in California, Arizona, and Florida approved the passage of measures that ban same-sex marriage. Arkansas passed a measure intended to bar gay men and lesbians from adopting children
  • Obama allows same-sex partners of federal employees to receive benefits.

    President Obama signs a referendum allowing the same-sex partners of federal employees to receive benefits. They will not be allowed full health coverage, however. This is Obama's first major initiative in his campaign promise to improve gay rights.
  • Multiple other states legalize or ban same sex marriage

    Iowa = rejects
    Vermont = accept
    Maine = accept, then ban
    New Hampshire = accepts
  • Proposition 8

    Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker ruled this referendum that banned same-sex marriage in California, violates the 14th Amendment's equal protection clause
  • President Obama repealed the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" military policy

    The U.S. Senate voted 65 to 31 in favor of repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell, the Clinton-era military policy that forbids openly gay men and women from serving in the military.
  • New York legalizes same-sex marriage

    New York passes a law to allow same-sex marriage. New York is now the largest state that allows gay and lesbian couples to marry
  • Proposition 8 declaired unconstitutional

    The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California ruled 2–1 that Proposition 8, the 2008 referendum that banned same-sex marriage in state, is unconstitutional because it violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment