Texas adop­tion agen­cies could ban Jews, gays, Mus­lims

Cape Breton Post - - World -

AUSTIN, Texas — Par­ents seek­ing to adopt chil­dren in Texas could soon be re­jected by state­funded or private agen­cies with reli­gious ob­jec­tions to them be­ing Jewish, Mus­lim, gay, sin­gle, or in­ter­faith cou­ples, under a pro­posal in the Repub­li­can­con­trolled Leg­is­la­ture.

Five other states have passed sim­i­lar laws pro­tect­ing faith­based adop­tion or­ga­ni­za­tions that refuse to place chil­dren with gay par­ents or other house­holds on reli­gious grounds — but Texas’ rule would ex­tend to state-funded agen­cies. Only South Dakota’s is sim­i­larly sweep­ingly.

The bill had been sched­uled for de­bate and ap­proval Satur­day in the state House, but law­mak­ers bogged down with other mat­ters. It now is ex­pected to come up next week. Re­pub­li­can spon­sors of Texas’ bill say it is de­signed to sup­port the reli­gious free­dom of adop­tion agen­cies and fos­ter care providers. Many of the agen­cies are private and faith-based but re­ceive state funds.

But op­po­nents say it robs chil­dren of sta­ble homes while fund­ing dis­crim­i­na­tion with tax­payer dol­lars.

“This would al­low adop­tion agen­cies to turn away qual­i­fied, lov­ing par­ents who are per­haps perfect in every way be­cause the agency has a dif­fer­ence in reli­gious be­lief,’’ said Cather­ine Oak­ley, se­nior leg­isla­tive coun­sel for the Hu­man Rights Cam­paign.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.