Extremist Michigan Legislators Once Again Work to Deny Foster Children Loving Homes

Equality Michigan LogoDETROIT – Extremists in the Michigan House of Representatives have scheduled a hearing on September 11th in the House Committee on Families, Children, and Seniors for House Bills 4927 and 4928, which would allow adoption agencies the ability to deny an adoption placement based on that agency’s moral or religious beliefs. Such broad language opens the door for adoption agencies to discriminate against prospective adoptive parents based on any arbitrary reason. However, the bills acknowledge that denying a couple based on religious or moral convictions does not imply “that the proposed adoption is not in the best interests of the adoptee.” Additionally, the bills protect public funding for agencies choosing to discriminate. Similar attempts have failed as recently as November 2012.

“A license to discriminate is destructive and unethical. With 14,000 children in Michigan’s foster care system at any one time and at least 3,000 in our foster care system actively seeking a safe home to prosper in, our focus should be on cultivating stable environments to raise these children. We should not be turning away capable and willing families eager to love and support a child in need. The strength of one’s convictions is not justification in and of itself for any action – and it is a despicable excuse for damaging another human being,” said Emily Dievendorf, managing director of Equality Michigan.

Dievendorf added, “Representatives Kurtz and LaFontaine are, again, wasting our money on bills which do nothing to help the 14,000 children residing in foster care in Michigan. Anyone who stands between a child and the loving and capable family they so desperately need is not focusing on solutions, but instead adding to the problems of these young people. We can do better at caring for our most vulnerable, and we owe it to these children and to Michigan to spend more time trying.”

Equality Michigan, the only statewide anti-violence and advocacy organization serving Michigan’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) communities, has a multi-year initiative – Respect Families and Marriages – fighting for the rights of LGBT families, including those seeking adoptions.

Equality Michigan calls on our members, allies, and friends in state government to stand up and say no to this latest attempt to harm Michigan’s children. They are encouraged to visit action.equalitymi.org to find out how they can take action today.

Via press release