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Random Official Takes It Upon Himself to Save N. Ireland from Gay Parents

Random Official Takes It Upon Himself to Save N. Ireland from Gay Parents

Northern Ireland’s High Court has ruled that a ban on gay couples in civil partnerships adopting children is unjustifiable but, throwing out all reason and scientific evidence to the contrary, the nation’s Health Minister is to appeal the case because he thinks the ruling is “not in the best interest” of vulnerable children.

Despite the rest of the United Kingdom having legalized joint adoption for same-sex couples, Northern Ireland’s law has clung to a provision barring unmarried couples from adopting.

Mr. Justice Seamus Treacy, in what has been hailed a landmark ruling, found that the current law “unjustifiably” targets those in civil partnerships by virtue of the fact that they simply cannot marry under current law.

“Not only do they suffer the same discrimination that unmarried opposite sex couples experience when applying to adopt jointly, they also suffer unjustifiable discriminatory treatment when compared against individual members of an opposite sex couple who can apply to adopt as an individual,” the judge is quoted as saying.

“This is despite the fact that the commitment evinced by choosing to enter a civil partnership ought to be similar to marriage in indicating the security of that relationship.”

Northern Ireland’s government has defended the law, in this suit brought by the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC), as being an overriding government concern for the best interests of child welfare.

However, Justice Treacy said he could find no basis for that contention.

The court concluded:

Adopting a child is no small undertaking. This is even more so nowadays when the profile of children who need adoptive families has changed dramatically.

[...]

A loving, permanent, stable home is infinitely preferable to growing up in care. The potential benefit to a child adopted in such circumstances is immeasurable. As well as a huge benefit to the child, these adopters also provide an invaluable service to the State. No relationship is perfect and while there are benefits to an adopted child in entering a relationship where a web of legal rights exists between the parents, that web is no guarantee of a lifelong, stable, committed relationship.

[...]

Issues relating to the sexual orientation, lifestyle, race, religion or other characteristics of the parties involved must of course be taken into account as part of the circumstances. But they cannot be allowed to prevail over what is in the best interests of the child.

The court did, however, give the government chance to appeal, and appeal Health Minister Edwin Poots has said he will do, albeit with a “heavy heart.” This is despite the fact that the ban has also been found to breach EU equality laws.

UTV Live News quotes Poots as saying he isn’t “convinced” gay couples adopting is in the best interest of the child, adding:

“The welfare of the child is the central tenet of the main body of children’s law in Northern Ireland- and this extends to adoption law. No-one has a right to adopt a child and, even when approved, prospective adoptive parents may or may not be deemed suitable to adopt a specific child – this relies solely on the best interests of that particular child being served by that arrangement.

Poots is unfortunately well known for his homophobic stances.

For instance, he has long maintained that Northern Ireland’s blanket ban on gay men donating blood should be allowed to stand despite a wealth of evidence saying that there is little substantiated risk in reducing or fully retiring the ban given the rigorous testing that is now in place.

Poots’ decision to waste yet more taxpayer money fighting joint adoption by gay couples has been slammed by local rights groups who say the court’s ruling is an important step in widening the pool of prospective parents for Northern Ireland’s population of children seeking care.

 

Related Reading:

‘Gays Are Deviants’ Politician Quits Party

Case Against Northern Ireland’s Gay Blood Ban Can Proceed

Ireland’s Trans Population Must Divorce to Gain Recognition

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Image credit: Thinkstock.

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65 comments

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9:15AM PDT on Nov 1, 2012

Noted, thanks for sharing.

8:47AM PDT on Oct 31, 2012

HELLO...big surprise? Northern Ireland is primarily Catholic ..

10:40AM PDT on Oct 29, 2012

I know plenty of straight couples who shouldn't be parents and there are so many homosexual couples who know how to love and raise a child. Sexuality has nothing to do with parenting. People say that homosexuals are trying to push their agenda on us, but look around us. Who is allowed to marry, what couples are portrayed and idolized in media, what couples can hold hands in public without condemnation, which couples can kiss in public, what kind of couples show up in most anniversary cards, which couples can visit each other in hospitals, etc.? Who is really pushing their agenda on who?

8:03AM PDT on Oct 29, 2012

A loving supportive environment is what a child needs.

4:37AM PDT on Oct 29, 2012

noted.

2:49AM PDT on Oct 29, 2012

It upsets me that anyone would want to prevent a loving couple from adopting a child.
Children need to be raised in a loving environment regardless of the sexual orientation of their parents. I would rather see a happy gay couple raise a child than a dysfunctional heterosexual couple. Too many parents don't care about their kids, at least same sex parents that strongly desire a child will raise them with love and care.

7:56PM PDT on Oct 28, 2012

being an adoptee myself this is close to my heart. there are babies & children without parents. it doesn't matter if a gay couple wants to adopt & give a child a better life. it doesn't matter because kids just want to have a family who loves them.

3:12PM PDT on Oct 28, 2012

It's a real shame there isn't a rocket leftover all of these idiots couldn't be placed in and sent to Mars. They're doing no good whatsoever here; perhaps exploring a dead planet would put their lacks of skills, compassion, good sense, etc. to work, you know, moving this rock here to over there. At least on Mars, surely to goodness, they couldn't do much harm to living things.

3:07PM PDT on Oct 28, 2012

So, I take it it's better for children to stay in care facilities than have the chance of growing up in a family of two loving individuals regardless of gender?

12:36PM PDT on Oct 28, 2012

What N. Ireland needs saving from when it comes to adoption rights is the nation’s Health Minister. (There are other things that need to change in N. Ireland, but i am saying for adoption, not the whole).

I have said it time and time again, if the couple can take care for and provide a loving environment, education, clothes, bed, food and ect ect, and have NO crimes involving a minor or violence of any kind, then let them adopt. A child needs parents that will love them and provide for them. There are too many children out there in need of loving homes to worry about the little things, like sexuality of the parents to be. Give the child(ren) to those who will care for it, heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual or even an asexual couple (I know an asexual couple, they are in it for the benefits and partnership)

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