Senator Janice Bowling, representing District 16, which includes Coffee County, voted to support the bill allowing adoption agencies to deny same-sex couples.

The bill (HB0836) passed Senate, with 20 “yes,” 6 “no” votes Jan. 14.

According to the bill, no licensed adoption agency would be required to participate in a child placement if that would “violate the agency’s written religious or moral convictions or policies.”

It also prohibits the state from denying an agency’s license or grant application because of the agency’s objection to participating in a placement that violates the agency’s moral convictions. The adoption agency would also be protected from lawsuits for such a refusal.

 

Bill Summary

This bill prohibits: Requiring a private licensed child-placing agency to perform, assist, consent to, refer, or participate in any child placement for foster care or adoption that would violate the agency’s written religious or moral convictions; The department of children’s services from denying an application for an initial license or renewal of a license or revoke the license of a private child-placing agency because of the agency’s objection to participating in a placement that violates the agency’s moral convictions; A state or local government entity from denying to a private licensed child-placing agency any grant, contract, or participation in a government program because of the agency’s objection to participating in a placement that violates the agency’s moral convictions; and Basing a civil action for either damages or civil relief on the refusal of a private licensed child placing agency to participate in a placement that violates the agency’s moral convictions.

The bill will become law once Gov. Bill Lee signs it.

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