The US Congress has turned down proposed amendments to a bill which would have allowed child welfare and adoption agencies to discriminate against LGBT+ parents, single parents and members of a different faith.
The Aderholt Amendment to the 2019 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education spending bill, was originally introduced by Republican Robert Aderholt of Alabama, who said religious adoption agencies and child welfare services were being discriminated against “simply because these organisations, based on religious conviction, choose not to place children with same-sex couples”. It would also have meant the same agencies could “deny a broad range of child welfare services to foster children based on religious or moral beliefs.”
Today my colleagues and I of the @HouseAppropsGOP passed my amendment which prohibits the discrimination of child welfare providers based on religious beliefs or moral convictions.
— Rep. Robert Aderholt (@Robert_Aderholt) July 11, 2018
Republicans had initially approved the amendment in July but a huge coalition of child welfare groups came together to fight it by forming the Every Child Deserves A Family campaign. Their aim was to promote “the best interests of all children in the foster care and adoption system by increasing their access to loving, stable, forever homes”.
The campaign was successful in pressing Congress to refute the Aderholt Amendment. Democratic Representative Rosa DeLauro said of its defeat “I was proud to fight to ensure that the Aderholt Amendment, which would have inserted bigotry and discrimination into our foster care and adoption systems, was removed.”
She continued: “Children deserve to live in safe, happy, and healthy permanent homes, and their best interests should always be placed first. No qualified adoptive and foster care parent should be discriminated against, period.”
By contacting your Congresspeople, you (along with over 300 organizations with the help of @family_equality's Every Child Deserves a Family campaign) made sure that children have the best chance of receiving loving homes. https://t.co/lNsnoMpzVr
— NACAC (@NACAC_Adopt) September 27, 2018
Spokesperson for the Family Equality Council, Denise Brogan-Kator, said: “Over 300 child welfare, civil rights and faith organisations successfully mobilized to press Congress to say no to depriving foster children of loving homes and needed services. The Aderholt Amendment had broken the cardinal rule of child welfare — that the needs of children should come first.”
In a shocking case in August, a US Catholic adoption agency ceased placing children rather than allowing same-sex couples to adopt. The Catholic Charities of Buffalo argued that placing children with same-sex couples was not “consistent with the teaching of the church.”
© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.
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