Thirty years ago, Florida outlawed adoption of children by gay couples. And that’s been the law here ever since.
However inconsistent though, gay couples have been allowed to serve as foster parents for foster children.
Setting up the situation where children live for extended periods with gay parents, with neither the parents nor the children permitted to harbor hopes of becoming legally related to each other through adoption.
And so it is for a gay man who has been caring for two foster children as his own for the past five years, since the younger child was only four months old. He refuses to accept that outcome.
At trial, the court found there was no credible evidence that children raised by gay parents did any less well than children raised by heterosexual parents.
Florida is the last remaining state to prohibit all adoptions by any gay people. And that is the basis of an appeal that was just decided.
An intermediate appellate court has struck down Florida’s law as violating constitutional guarantees of equal protection of the law.
An appeal to Florida’s highest court is anticipated.
In the meantime, the state will no longer enforce the statutory prohibition of adoption by gay parents.
One thing is clear. For the many children in foster care in Florida, the pool of prospective parents who just may adopt them has suddenly grown a lot larger.