New numbers obtained by The Associated Press show Norfolk had the most same-sex marriages in the state since the act became legal last October.
With a state wide total of 3,600 gay marriage certificates filed between Oct. 2014 and August 2015, Norfolk played host to 320 of them. Virginia Beach came in second with 298 certificates and was third with Richmond with 229.
In June of this year, Gay RVA asked for total number of marriages in VA and was told by AG Herring’s office the number floated around 1,964. This means about 1,700 gay weddings happened this summer.
“Virginia’s experience thus far with marriage equality shows that it produces real, tangible benefits for thousands of same-sex couples and their children, as well as benefits for Virginia’s economy, business community, and colleges and universities,” said Michael Kelly, Director of Communications for AG Herring’s office at the time of the GayRVA request.
The numbers were gathered via the state’s Department of Health’s Office of Vital Records, and the AP said about 90% of Circuit Courts state-wide have issued at least one license to a same sex couple, and gay marriages added up to about 5% of the total number of marriages in the state.
“Thank you for not giving up on that rainy November day in 2006 when we lost the marriage amendment,” said Equality Virginia’s Executive Director James Parrish in a statement released earlier this month, on the 1 year anniversary of the federal court striking VA’s same-sex marriage ban. “Thank you for helping bring the freedom to marry to Virginia.”
After hearing about the recent marriage totals, AG Herring went on to say he was “utterly inspired” to see so many loving couples unite in Virginia, but he admitted there was still lots of work to be done.
“We still have work to do to fight against discrimination in the workplace, housing, and wherever we find it,” he said in an email to GayRVA. “But I’m confident that LGBTQ advocates, elected allies, and friends of the community will continue to be strong agents of change for progress on these issues.”