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Ban Lifted: Same-Sex Couples Can Now Adopt

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seattle.gov
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Utah’s Supreme Court lifted its hold on adoptions by same-sex couples Thursday. The adoptions had been put on hold in May following the state’s decision to appeal a 10th Circuit Court ruling which struck down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage. However, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month to not hear appeals from states seeking to keep their bans in place legalized same-sex marriage in Utah and opened the door for adoptions to begin.

The Executive Director of the LGBT rights group Equality Utah, Troy Williams, said he is pleased there is no longer a distinction between gay and straight couples when it comes to adoption.

“To have a segment of our society to be excluded, to be told, ‘your family is less than,’ is very demeaning,” Williams said. “To see us move forward, to see liberty, freedom and opportunity expand to include same-sex couples and their children, it’s beautiful, it’s so exciting. It’s a victory for all of us.”

The decision came in response to four adoptions that were put on hold because the hopeful parents attempting to adopt were same-sex couples.

Williams called the decision an expansion of liberty that will benefit all Utah citizens, not just those couples who can now adopt.

“I think what’s so exciting is that Utahns are beginning to realize that everyone should be treated equally under the law and that includes the freedom to marry who you love, to raise a family and to enjoy all of blessings, the privileges and responsibilities that come with pursuing the American dream,” Williams said.

Before the ban was lifted, only one parent could have legal rights to a child, even if both adults were involved in the parenting.