A Republican Texas judge is forcing a lesbian couple and their children apart with a ‘morality clause'.
Carolyn Compton, who was granted divorce from her ex-husband in 2011, is facing a forced separation from her current partner Page Price with whom she’s been in a relationship with for three years.
Locked in a custody dispute over the two children she had with her ex-husband, Compton has now been slapped with a ‘morality clause’ that says anyone who isn’t related by ‘blood or marriage’ cant be around the children past 9 pm.
The ‘morality clause’ imposed by Judge John Roach also applies to individuals who are in a ‘dating or intimate relationship’ with Compton.
Since same-sex relationships are not legally protected in the state of Texas, Price has been given 30 days to leave her home she shares with Compton and the two children.
Price wrote on her Facebook page: ‘Our children are happy and well adjusted. By [Judge Roach’s] enforcement, being that we cannot marry in this state, I have been ordered to move out of my home.’
The Dallas Voice reports that Ken Upton Jr., a senior staff attorney at gay rights legal organization Lambda legal said ‘morality cases are rarely enforced and were historically used to prevent unmarried people from cohabitating with children present.’
‘What the clause has become is an extra burden on gay people because they’re no more likely to violate it than straight people, he said. “It’s a problem that continues with homophobia.’
Upton believes that the couple stands a good chance of winning an appeal. ‘This could be an important case in Texas. I think it’s a case to watch.’
A fundraiser is being held to pay for Paige and Compton’s attorney fees, on Sunday 19 May from 3-6 pm at Eden Lounge 2911 Main Street. Admission is $25 (€19, £16).