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The political debates and policies related to the civil marriage rights of same-sex couples have psychological and social impacts on lesbian, gay, bisexual individuals and same-sex couples and also on their families, friends, and communities. The overarching goal of this issue was to significantly advance the previous sparse literature on these impacts. The result is an international, interdisciplinary, methodologically, and theoretically diverse collection of original empirical research articles that collectively address three broad questions: (1) What are the social and psychological effects of marriage amendment campaigns and policies? (2) How does civil marriage compare to other statuses for same-sex couples or marriage in other countries? (3) How do anti-gay initiatives affect heterosexual allies and intergroup relationships? Across the diverse approaches and populations that comprise this volume, findings converge in demonstrating that the denial of civil marriage rights is a significant public health issue with important policy implications.