6 Adoption by married couples or single people

Adoption and Children Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 12:00 pm on 21 November 2001.

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In relation to clause 47 After Adoption continues to be concerned that the bill still restricts adoption to married couples or single people. We are mindful of the Adoption Convention of 1967, Article 6 which prohibits adoption by unmarried couples, and with respect, we feel it is timely to reconsider obligations under this Convention.

We are concerned that the bill does not allow for two adults in a stable relationship to adopt a child jointly. In our changing society where so many children are born to unmarried parents and a number of other children are successfully parented by same sex couples we feel it is important that these relationships are acknowledged and the commitment of both adults to the child respected.

From our experience of supporting a growing number of same sex couples we have noted a trend that suggests these couples are more prepared to adopt `harder to place' children and are more open to support to make these placements work. This openness to support results in more successful placements for these children.