From the Cincinnati Enquirer:
Butler County Children Services has quietly adopted a controversial policy to give “traditional” married couples preference over single parents and same-sex couples looking to adopt children through the foster care system.We've been talking about everyone else's fight... seems like there's one here.
The new rule, which took effect in December, would not exclude these groups from adopting, but it clearly states that when all other things are equal, married couples would be given the advantage.
Children Services Director Mike Fox says he knows the policy touches on a thorny issue that many people don’t like to talk about. But in reality, he says, his agency is putting in writing one of many characteristics workers consider when placing children.
“When you strip away all the political correctness, just ask the simple question: If you had a choice for children to grow up in single families or a non-traditional family, what would you choose?” Fox asked. “The data overwhelmingly says that kids who grow up in traditional families have a better chance of success in life.”
The policy is not absolute. “The trump card in all decisions is the best interest of the child,” he said.
So for example, if a baby girl has been placed in a home with a same-sex couple for two years and is doing well, the agency won’t remove the infant because a traditional family wants to adopt her.
Even so, the policy, which appears to be the first of its kind in the state, is raising questions about its legality and whether it discriminates against certain groups.
Sue Gregory was one of several parents shocked Wednesday to learn about a policy they called both “unfair” and “discriminatory.”
Even though she’s a stay-at-home mom and wouldn’t be affected by the change, she said she’s still disturbed by it.
“I love staying at home with my kids, but that doesn’t say the foster mom who is single and has to work is any less of a parent,” said Gregory, past president of a local support group for foster parents.
“This seems wrong on so many levels that I can’t wrap my head around it. I don’t understand it. Whether they are gay, lesbian or single, these people are still awesome parents to their children, and it’s wrong.”