The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Nevada, has filed a brief challenging the state’s ban on equal marriage.

The brief was filed with the 9th US Court of Appeals in San Francisco, and argues that marriage is not a right to be reserved only for some citizens.

It was filed as an amicus, or friend of the court, brief, and is part of an appeal brought by Lambda Legal, which challenges a ruling by US District Judge Robert Jones, from 2012.

Last year, Judge Jones upheld the state’s ban on equal marriage which was approved by voters in 2002, saying that Nevada has a “legitimate state interest” in maintaining marriage as between one man and one woman.

During the Senate debate around a bill to repeal the ban earlier this tear, Senator Kelvin Atkinson nervously announced that he is gay, saying he had not intended to come out, but felt that the time was right. 

“I’m black. I’m gay… I know this is the first time many of you have heard me say that I am a black, gay male,” he said.