Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed a series of controversial adoption bills into law on Thursday (11 June) that critics say gives adoption agencies the legal right to discriminate against LGBTI people and others.
House Bills 4188, 4189 and 4190 allow agencies that contract with the state to cite religious grounds when declining service to prospective parents.
‘The state has made significant progress in finding more forever homes for Michigan kids in recent years and that wouldn’t be possible without the public-private partnerships that facilitate the adoption process,’ Snyder said in a statement.
‘We are focused on ensuring that as many children are adopted to as many loving families as possible regardless of their makeup,’ he added.
But the Human Rights Campaign is condemning Snyder for signing what HRC describes as ‘dangerously broad’ and ‘extreme anti-LGBT adoption bills’ into law.
HRC calls it ‘special taxpayer-funded discrimination’that will permit rampant discrimination against LGBTI couples and puts thousands of children at risk of not finding the homes that they need.
‘Governor Rick Snyder has proven today that he has utter disdain for the welfare of children in Michigan and that he cares only about empowering backwards discrimination,’ HRC President Chad Griffin said in a statement.
‘This legislation keeps children in need out of the loving homes they deserve, and it sets this great state back decades.’
HRC points out that the new law could also be used as an excuse to discriminate against other minorities and groups in addition to the LGBTI community.
Child placement agencies that refuse any services to prospective parents are required to provide information and a list of alternative adoption agencies that are willing to serve them.