Monday, May 6, 2013


Bill To Be Reintroduced For Gay Adoption Has Bipartisan Support

WASHINGTON -- A bill that will legalise adoptions and foster parenting by same-sex couples and individuals is due to reintroduced Tuesday. Proponents of the The Every Child Deserves A Family Act argue that the momentum established by recent legislative victories over the issue of same-sex marriage coupled with increasing support by GOP lawmakers will give the measure enough standing as to pass through Congress this session.
The Every Child Deserves A Family Act would prohibit programs that receive federal funding from discriminating against potential foster and adoptive families based on sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status.
The Family Equality Council noted that same-sex couples and individuals face considerable legal barriers in attempts to adopt or fostering children in 39 states, with seven states banning a partner in a same-sex relationship from adopting their partner's children.  
The Family Equality Council said that Congressional sponsors will hold a press conference at the Capitol Tuesday, accompanied by same-sex families. In the House, the measure is co-sponsored by Democratic Representative John Lewis from Georgia and Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand,(D) is lead sponsor in the Senate.
In a statement released Monday, PFLAG National Executive Director Jody M. Huckaby said;
"Why...should more than 400,000 children remain in foster care -- 104,000 of whom are eligible for adoption -- when they could receive this support from loving, capable, and qualified lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents . 
This is truly discrimination at its worst: hurtful to the people who are being denied the opportunity to become parents, and harmful to thousands of vulnerable children being denied the opportunity for stable, loving, permanent homes."
Further support for same-sex couples or individuals came from an unlikely source last week when former Republican Vice-Presidential candidate, Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin told folks gathered in a town hall meeting that he regretted his 1999 vote which banned  gay adoptions in the District of Columbia.
"I do believe that if there are children who are orphans who do not have a loving person or couple, I think if a person wants to love and raise a child they ought to be able to do that. Period. I would vote that way," Ryan said.
Emily Hecht-McGowan, director of public policy for Family Equality Council noted that Ryan's comments,"...demonstrate that the best interests of children isn't a partisan issue. We welcome support of the Every Child Deserves a Family Act by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle."