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On the march: progressive national changes for same-sex couples

"Sometimes the law does not change as fast as society is changing."

We heartily agree with that statement at the Robertson, Oswalt & Associates law firm in Little Rock (and with additional locations across Arkansas).

In fact, we wrote it.

Those words from our firm's website are written in the context of what we term "nontraditional family law issues," namely, those that affect same-sex couples and the GLBT community in a special way.

It is sheer understatement to note that many individuals and couples in Arkansas and across the country have encountered -- and continue to encounter -- comparatively difficult challenges when it comes to important family matters such as marriage recognition, divorce, adoption, child custody and foster parenting.

That they do so merely because of their sexual orientation or identification is patently unfair and indicative of a compelling need for social change and equal rights for all people with family law opportunities and challenges.

Needed change is occurring, of course, but in a patchwork and uneven quality across the country.

Still, that it is happening, and with a general resoluteness, spells good news for a large demographic that has long been denied equal opportunity in the family law realm.

A recent CNN article notes a victory just achieved by same-sex couples in Nebraska, where partners of the same gender have long been denied the right to be licensed as foster parents.

That state's highest court struck down that ban earlier this month, stating that it equated to "a sign reading 'Whites-Only' on the hiring-office door."

As CNN notes, the ruling follows judicial decisions in other states in recent months that are progressively expanding the rights of same-sex couples in varied family law matters.

Time marches on. Although the pace and flow of change might be less than consistent, it is unquestionable that change is occurring.

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