By a 361-61 vote, the US House put an end to a bill that would have reduced the rights of LGBT parents.
This amendment would have allowed states to have policies that allow adoption agencies to not place children in families that are incompatible with their religious beliefs.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union, this measure was taken out of the legislation during the conference committee process as a result of opposition led by Rep. Rosa DeLauro and Sen. Patty Murray both Democrats.
“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 from this year’s Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education funding bill,” DeLauro said. “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.”
The amendment was totally defeated. After the House vote, the US Senate also rejected this discriminatory amendment for LGBT couples.
“This amendment would have placed the religious and moral beliefs of certain taxpayer-funded child welfare service providers above the best interests of the children in their care,” Ian Thompson, a senior legislative representative with the American Civil Liberties Union, said. “The only determination that should govern the actions of these providers is what is in the best interests of the child. No family should ever be told they are not qualified to serve as foster or adoptive parents because they are LGBTQ or the ‘wrong’ religion. The successful defeat of the Aderholt Amendment sends a clear message: There is no place for taxpayer-funded discrimination in the child welfare system.”
300 child welfare, civil rights and faith organizations and 40 senators opposed the amendment.
Currently, there are ten states that allow religious objections against LGBT families: Alabama, Michigan, Mississippi, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Oklahoma, and Kansas.
Only three states and the District of Colombia prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in adoption. Five others ban discrimination based on sexual orientation.
There is still work to be done to ensure that no LGBT parent is discriminated against.