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December 11, 2013

Following the Health Minister Edwin Poots' attempts to keep the ban, the Supreme Court has said gay couples are now free to apply to adopt children

Gay and unmarried couples are now free to adoption children in Northern Ireland, following a ban being finally lifted today (11 December).

They can now apply in the same way as straight couples.

A Department of Health spokesperson said: 'Following the Court of Appeal judgement in June 2013, unmarried couples, including same-sex couples, and those in a civil partnership may apply to adopt.

'The final decision regarding the granting of an adoption order will lie with the court.'

November 13, 2013

Northern Ireland Health Minister claims it is 'natural order' for a man and a woman to raise a child as gay people can 'resist urges'

Northern Ireland’s Health Minister Edwin Poots has defended his opposition to same-sex couples adopting and gay men donating blood.

Slammed for his homophobic views in the past, the minister defended allegations his views are ‘backward’.

Speaking during assembly question time, he was asked if he thought homosexuality could cured or an ‘abomination’.

‘No, I don’t think [homosexuality] is an illness,’ he said. ‘I do think that many people have various elements to their lives when it comes to sexuality.

October 15, 2013

High Court judge has ruled Northern Ireland's gay blood rules are 'irrational' and could overturn the lifetime ban

Northern Ireland's health minister has said he wants to ban men who have gay sex from giving blood, not gay people.

Edwin Poots has responded to the Belfast High Court who ruled he did not have the authority to impose a lifetime gay blood ban.

On Friday (11 October), the judge ruled he had breached the ministerial code by failing to take the issue to the Executive.

Speaking to BBC News, he said if he did break the ministerial code then he did it 'unwittingly'.

October 7, 2013

As gay couples flock to England to adopt, Health Minister Edwin Poots claims he wants the ban as children deserve 'stability'

Gay couples in Northern Ireland could soon be joining the rest of the UK in having the right to adopt children.

But Edwin Poots, the Health Minister, is now doing everything he can to stop that from happening.

The Court of Appeal recently ruled the ban preventing gay, lesbian and unmarried couples from adopting children was unlawful.

The only way a LGB person could adopt was if they were single.

Poots has now applied to the Supreme Court for leave to appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision that the ban is discriminatory.

October 19, 2012

Northern Ireland's High Court rules that a ban on gay and lesbian couples adopting children is unlawful

The director of a conservative Catholic think tank in Ireland says he backs gay adoption over 'awful' orphanages.

Northern Ireland's High Court ruled yesterday (18 October) that a ban on gay and lesbian couples adopting children is unlawful, challenging the current law which states that a single gay or lesbian person can adopt but a couple in a civil partnership cannot.

Northern Ireland's Health Minister Edwin Poots says he will appeal the ruling. 

August 6, 2012

Protesters in Londonderry urge for 'biased and illogical' ban on gay blood donations to be lifted in Northern Ireland

Protesters have called on Northern Ireland's health minister Edwin Poots to resign over his refusal to lift a ban on gay people donating blood.

LGBT rights activists shouted 'Give Poots the boot' outside a blood donation session in Londonderry on Saturday (4 August).

They then went inside to offer their blood, which the health service in Northern Ireland is still not allowed to accept, despite restrictions on gay donors being eased in the rest of the UK.

August 6, 2012

Protesters in Londonderry urge for 'biased and illogical' ban on gay blood donations to be lifted in Northern Ireland

Protesters have called on Northern Ireland's health minister Edwin Poots to resign over his refusal to lift a ban on gay people donating blood.

LGBT rights activists shouted 'Give Poots the boot' outside a blood donation session in Londonderry on Saturday (4 August).

They then went inside to offer their blood, which the health service in Northern Ireland is still not allowed to accept, despite restrictions on gay donors being eased in the rest of the UK.

June 29, 2012

High Court rules there is case for arguing that Northern Ireland ban on gay blood donations is 'irrational and unlawful'

An unidentified gay man has won the first stage of a court battle to lift an 'irrational and unlawful' ban on gay blood donations in Northern Ireland.

The ban, in place since the 1980s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in November 2011.  But health minister, Edwin Poots, claims the outlawing of gay donations is is to ensure public safety.

June 29, 2012

High Court rules there is case for arguing that Northern Ireland ban on gay blood donations is 'irrational and unlawful'

An unidentified gay man has won the first stage of a court battle to lift an 'irrational and unlawful' ban on gay blood donations in Northern Ireland.

The ban, in place since the 1980s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in November 2011.  But health minister, Edwin Poots, claims the outlawing of gay donations is is to ensure public safety.

June 28, 2012

A Northern Ireland court has heard how a ban on gay men giving blood is ‘irrational and unlawful’

Lawyers representing an unidentified man have pressed the Northern Ireland health minister to lift a ban on gay blood donations.

The ban, in place since the 1980s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in November 2011. However health minister, Edwin Poots, has maintained the ban saying it is to ensure public safety.

June 28, 2012

A Northern Ireland court has heard how a ban on gay men giving blood is ‘irrational and unlawful’

Lawyers representing an unidentified man have pressed the Northern Ireland health minister to lift a ban on gay blood donations.

The ban, in place since the 1980s, was lifted in England, Scotland and Wales in November 2011. However health minister, Edwin Poots, has maintained the ban saying it is to ensure public safety.

June 18, 2012

SDLP slams Edwin Poots for 'repellent' backing of gay blood donor ban in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's health minister has been asked to produce evidence after continuing to back a 'bigoted' ban on gay blood donors.

Speaking on the BBC Sunday Politics NI program yesterday (17 June), Edwin Poots said he received two new pieces of research that strengthened his position and said he wants to extend the ban to others who also engage in 'high risk' sexual behavior.

June 18, 2012

SDLP slams Edwin Poots for 'repellent' backing of gay blood donor ban in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's health minister has been asked to produce evidence after continuing to back a 'bigoted' ban on gay blood donors.

Speaking on the BBC Sunday Politics NI program yesterday (17 June), Edwin Poots said he received two new pieces of research that strengthened his position and said he wants to extend the ban to others who also engage in 'high risk' sexual behavior.

June 17, 2012

Edwin Poots suggests people who have sex with prostitutes and Africans should also be banned from giving blood

Health Minister Edwin Poots is standing by his decision to ban gay men in Northern Ireland from donating blood.

Speaking on the BBC Sunday Politics NI programme today (17 June), Poots said he received two new pieces of research this week that strengthened his position.

However Poots has said he does not want the ban to apply to gay people only.

He said: ‘I think that people who engage in high risk sexual behaviour in general should be excluded from giving blood.