An American television wedding competition has been slammed for refusing to accept gay and lesbian couples as contestants.

NBC’s Today Show is currently calling for contestants for its “Modern Day Wedding Contest” but the application form only has options for the groom and bride’s name.

The network told the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) that to qualify couples “must be able to be legally married in New York, which is where the wedding will take place”.

GLAAD countered that while same sex marriage licenses are not granted in New York, the state does legally recognise same-sex marriages licensed in other states.

Same-sex couples can currently obtain marriage licenses in Iowa, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Washington D.C.

“NBC is mistakenly equating the marriage license with the wedding celebration. Same-sex weddings are entirely legal in New York State,” said GLAAD.

“As long as the marriage license is conferred upon the same-sex couples by another state, New York State recognises the marriage as a fully valid and legal one.”

The organisation urged members of the LGBT community to contact the television network and demand that same-sex couples be allowed to participate in the contest.

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