The Utah Division of Child and Family Services is reeling after a juvenile court judge ordered them to remove a baby from a foster home because the foster parents are lesbian.
Judge Scott Johansen was presiding over a “routine hearing” for April Hoagland and Beckie Peirce when he ordered that the baby should be removed from their home and placed with a heterosexual couple. The women are among a small group of same-sex married couples (roughly 20) who are fostering children in the state of Utah.
The women talked to local news KUTV where April said of the judge’s ruling:
He said from his research he had found out that kids in homosexual homes don’t do as well as they do in heterosexual homes. And, when they asked to show his research, he would not.
Ashley Sumner, agency spokesperson for the Division of Child and Family Services, told reporters that she couldn’t share specifics about this case but “confirmed that the couple’s account of the ruling is accurate — the judge’s decision was based on the couple being lesbian.” It was also added that the agency was unaware of any performance issues with the foster parents.
The baby was placed in the mothers’ home three months ago, and in that time they have received both the support of the foster child’s attorney and of the baby’s biological mother.
The couple has also received some high-profile support. Hillary Clinton weighed in on the case last night on Twitter.
Being a good parent has nothing to do with sexual orientation—thousands of families prove that. https://t.co/xQLh25RAYR
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) November 12, 2015
Currently, the Utah Division of Child and Family Services says they have not seen the judge’s order but they will be forced to comply. However, they also plan to have their attorneys review the judge’s order to determine if the order violates any laws.
April and Beckie plan to fight the judge’s ruling and vow to continue to fight for their foster child, whom they wish to eventually adopt.
Undoubtably, this judge’s ruling will not hold up in the appeals process. But seriously, what a waste of time and money for these women and the entire system. Why should they be put through such a hassle?
You know, I’m so sick of hearing conservatives talk about how they support less government and condemn “uncle Sam” for providing things like protections for the little guy from corporations or the possibility of providing healthcare for all – and then they use “big government” to go after a couple of loving parents who stepped up to the plate to take care of a child in need. While this judge’s political views are unknown – this action certainly aligns with right-wing motivation and could easily be supported by the Christian right.
Way to go right-wingers. This was a great example of “small government” at work. You really showed them (and this baby). Awesome job.
CBS News reported on this case this morning and the commentary at the end of their segment is perfect. Gayle King closes saying:
“Everyone always says what kids really want is love – a home with loving parents. It’s 2015.”
Watch the news report via CBSNews here:
Featured image via video screen capture.