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Lesbians get on girl's birth certificate

(DES MOINES REGISTER) — The Iowa Department of Public Health has been ordered to issue a new birth certificate listing both members of a same-sex marriage as the legal parents of a 2-year-old girl.

Polk County District Judge Eliza Ovrom ordered the new birth certificate Wednesday as part of her ruling in a lawsuit brought by Melissa Gartner, 41, and Heather Gartner, 40.

The Des Moines couple sued the state when the Iowa Department of Public Health refused in 2009 to list both names on the birth certificate of their daughter, Mackenzie.

Ovrom’s 12-page ruling stops short of declaring a constitutional right for same-sex parents to be named automatically on newborns’ birth certificates. But it faults state officials for failing to correctly interpret older Iowa laws in light of the April 2009 Iowa Supreme Court decision that legalized same-sex marriages.