A proposal in Congress would ban Catholic adoption agencies and undercut the needs of children by prohibiting discrimination on the basis of marital status or sexual orientation, two legislative experts say.
“This legislation would prohibit adoption agencies and foster care agencies, including religious adoption agencies and foster care agencies, from providing services in many cases,” warned Lori Windham, Senior Counsel with the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. “They would have to choose between following their religious beliefs and shutting down.”
Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.) introduced the bill, titled “Every Child Deserves a Family Act,” on May 3. Its 52 co-sponsors in the House include Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Sen. Kristin Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) is expected to introduce companion legislation in the Senate.
The House bill would prohibit “discrimination in adoption or foster care placements” based on sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status of any prospective adoptive or foster parent, or the sexual orientation or gender identity of the child involved. [...]
But Sprigg said the bill would drive out “some of the most effective adoption agencies that there are.”
“Christian adoption agencies such as Catholic Charities have such an outstanding record. It would be sacrificing the interest of children to drive them out of the adoption business.”
In 2009 Catholic Charities completed 3,794 adoptions and provided adoption services to 43,982 clients. It provided foster care services for 18,344 children and adolescents, the Catholic Charities USA 2009 Annual Survey reports.
“The impact of the legislation would be to mean that fewer children will actually get homes,” said Windham. She said such proposals are part of a “growing conflict” and that supporters of religious freedom should oppose Stark’s bill.
Without a religious freedom exemption, the bill would make it “very difficult if not impossible” for religiously-affiliated agencies to operate, Windham said.
Similar laws have forced some agencies to close.
Windham cited a regulation enforcement in Massachusetts which compelled the Boston Catholic Charities affiliate to stop providing adoption services because it could not place children with same-sex couples.
The proposal could have similar effects to a law in the United Kingdom which caused the closure or disaffiliation of all Catholic adoption agencies because they could not in good conscience place children with same-sex couples.
Thursday, June 2, 2011
You've probably already seen this, but just in case you missed it--gay activists reveal that their real agenda is to end religious freedom for anybody who still thinks that homosexual sex acts are gravely morally evil and sinful: