On Wednesday, the House of Representatives rejected legislation that could have allowed federally funded adoption professionals to discriminate against LGBTQ couples, single parents, and families of different faiths based on religious grounds.
The amendment was attached to a spending bill by the U.S. House Appropriations Committee. Both the House and the Senate have passed the original bill, without any such add-ons regarding adoption discrimination.
If passed, the amendment would have allowed adoption professionals to turn away prospective adoptive parents based on religious grounds. This would have meant that LGBTQ couples, single parents and families of different religious backgrounds could all have been denied adoption services.
The specific language used in the bill allowed organizations to protect their “sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions.” Rep. Robert Aderholt of Alabama, who wrote the bill, told CNN, “The reason for this is simply because these organizations, based on religious conviction, choose not to place children with same-sex couples.”
The amendment had strong opposition, with 300 civil rights and child welfare groups in opposition as well as at least 40 senators who sent a letter to the House Appropriations Committee opposing the amendment.
David Stacy, the director of government affairs at the Human Rights Campaign, weighed in when the amendment was first written.
“Any Member of Congress who supports this amendment is clearly stating that it is more important to them to discriminate than it is to find loving homes for children in need.”