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New Virginia adoption rules permit anti-gay, gender, disability, other forms of discrimination

By Ian Millhiser
Think Progress
Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Virginia agency has approved new adoption rules which authorize state-licensed adoption agencies to engage in a breathtakingly broad range of discrimination:


Virginia’s Board of Social Services on Wednesday approved final regulations on adoption that, starting in the spring, will effectively allow state-licensed private agencies to deny the adoption of a child by same-sex couples.

The regulations also will allow the adoption agencies to deny services to prospective parents on the basis of age, gender, disability, religion, political belief and family status.

The regulations, however, will prohibit discrimination based on race, color or national origin.

Let’s be absolutely clear what this means. This means that a loving and generous potential parent could be denied the ability to adopt because they are gay. Or because they are Jewish. Or because they are a woman. Or because they are divorced. Or because they are in a wheelchair.

Moreover, these new rules run headlong into voter opinion and scientific research. Fifty-five percent of Virginia adults believe it should be legal for gay parents to adopt, and there is no scientific basis whatsoever for the claim that heterosexuals are superior parents.

Meanwhile, nearly six thousand Virginia children live in foster homes. All of them would have a better, more stable childhood — not to mention one that would better prepare them to succeed in adulthood — if they were placed in a permanent home with a loving, stable and financially secure family.

It is baffling why a state would deny these children a fair shot at life just because the family that wants to adopt them doesn’t look like some narrow-minded notion of what a family should look like.

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Filed under: Virginia

35 more reader comments:

  1. You think this is excellent? If you do, why are you even reading something here?

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:08pm
  2. Not good. LGBT parents are caring parents.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:08pm
  3. every child in the ‘system’ represents a dollar sign … remove the financial incentive for ‘warehousing’ and increase the financial incentive for adoption

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:08pm
  4. this is nasty

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:08pm
  5. tara heck should be given the darwin award for most pathetic example of a human

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:09pm
  6. :<

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:09pm
  7. i live in va.this sucks

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:09pm
  8. Hello … America! Some dude marry dudes and become great parents! Embrace it we have !!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:09pm
  9. Bob McDonnell and his congressional cronies are against the people. It’s simple as that. They need to go immediately.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:10pm
  10. This is total BS!!! I can’t stand this. Wow Virginia agencies are promoting discrimination!!!! Ughhh!! This is sad

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:11pm
  11. What frank said, but same for disabled parents. We’re people too.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:11pm
  12. this is just bullshit.i cant wait to move away from va

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:13pm
  13. i hope im misreading this lol. i get ” agencies can deny the adoption of a child by same-sex couples” < if thats correct imma start fireing screw drivers out of a potato gun.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:13pm
  14. im not very surprised…NOVA is the only part of va that is accepting…this is when the federal gov really should step in and take action to help the american citizens!!!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:15pm
  15. Such typical Virginia bullshit. I guess I’m lucky I’ll be alone forever and that I’m moving away from this crack ass state. Considering I’m disabled (Asperger’s syndrome) AND a lesbian, I know I’d never be able to adopt here. That closet just keeps looking better and better.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:25pm
  16. Lack of democracy here, nothing but hate

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:25pm
  17. It still boggles my mind that some of these agencies would seriously rather a child go without love & a family than give them to a loving couple who just happens to be of the same sex. Disgusting.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:27pm
  18. I’m ashamed to be a Virginian over such ignorance. :(

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:30pm
  19. are we still in the dark ages!!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:34pm
  20. So Wrong!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:34pm
  21. Just another reason to convince my gay son to move with me away from richmond va and to the mountains of west virginia

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 8:56pm
  22. really? ug. this country needs an enema.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:15pm
  23. they would rather have the children live in kiddie jails than live in a loving home where someone really loves them !!!!!!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:16pm
  24. just pure ignorance and hateful

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:19pm
  25. horrid, those children need loving homes & they just act as if they are unfeeling possessions, horrid

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:32pm
  26. Idiots

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:33pm
  27. Absolutely disgusting. I lived in Virginia. Loved every moment of it. But now I know I will never really return.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:46pm
  28. The south never changes. Sigh.

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 10:12pm
  29. Their modo should be “Virginia is for Haters”!

    Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 10:40pm
  30. Yeah, because we adopted orphans really fucking care who it is that keeps us off the streets. (rolls eyes)

    Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 at 12:14am
  31. I think between the uproar this article produces and the slowly dawning realization that such legislation will cause a bottleneck that keeps thousands of kids out of “forever
    Families” and dependant on the over-stretched state budget that this law won’t stand for long.

    Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 at 5:10am
  32. This should be reason for gay people to quit smoking cigarettes. .stop supporting Virginia and North Carolina tobacco selling death merchants

    Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 at 5:30am
  33. I hate this…These a-holes make the entire state look bad, which of course is not true. Beautiful scenery, some sweet down-home people..what a bunch of hypocritical jerks…OUST THEM!!!!!

    Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 at 7:37am
  34. No offense Mike, but VA is horrible. Stationed here a year and a half, finally headed up to CT. VA is for masochists

    Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 at 4:14pm
  35. This is so effing sick! This is unconstitutional!

    Posted on Saturday, December 17, 2011 at 5:58pm