An Indiana lesbian suffering from
ovarian cancer has asked a federal judge to force the state to
recognize her out-of-state marriage.
U.S. District Judge Richard L. Young
will hold a hearing Thursday in his Evansville chambers to consider
the couple's request, The
Evansville Courier & Press reported.
Niki Quasney and Amy Sandler married
last year in Massachusetts, the first state to legalize such unions
nearly a decade ago.
The couple, who recently joined one of
five lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of Indiana's marriage
law, want Quasney, who has stage 4 ovarian cancer, to be listed as
married on her anticipated death certificate and Sandler listed as
her surviving spouse.
The women have been together 13 years
and are raising two daughters, ages 1 and 2.
“Every day that Indiana denies Amy,
Niki and their two children the protections of marriage is cruel and
discriminatory against a family whose time together is precious,”
Paul Castillo, staff attorney for Lambda Legal, which is representing
the women, said in a statement. “This family shouldn’t have to
endure discrimination from the State of Indiana while fighting to
enjoy the time they have left together as a family dealing with a
Bryan Corbin, a spokesman for the
attorney general's office, said the agency would defend the ban in
Judges facing similar cases in Ohio,
New Mexico and Illinois have all ruled in favor of the plaintiffs.