Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin on Thursday will meet with Rhode Island lawmakers who are considering a gay marriage bill.

Shumlin served as president of the Senate when Vermont first legalized civil unions in 2000 and marriage for gay and lesbian couples in 2009.

Speaking to Vermont Public Radio, Shumlin said he wanted to share his state's story with lawmakers.

“I just want to go down and add my voice, tell about our experience, just let them know that at least in Vermont's case not only can you do the right thing, not only can you have your state be a place where you treat everybody with the dignity and equality that they should expect, but that there isn't political fall out and frankly a lot of people appreciate you for having the courage to stand up.”

Shumlin is expected to meet with Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee, a supporter of gay marriage, and with legislative leaders in Providence. But the Associated Press reports that Shumlin will not meet with Rhode Island Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, an opponent of gay marriage.

The House and Senate have held hearings on the issue but they have yet to vote on the legislation.