Sex discrimination history. Write to Katy Steinmetz at katy. Background and History: Rhode Island passed same-sex marriage legislation and Governor Chafee signed the bill into law on May 2, Same-sex marriages were delayed, pending the ballot outcome. Since that time, many states have taken actions to clearly define marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman and others have allowed same-sex couples to marry. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling. Partprohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs or activities operated by recipients of Federal financial assistance. Supreme Court refused to do so.