The Georgia Voice reports:
The Georgia Senate on Friday morning passed a bill that would allow adoption agencies to refuse to place children with same-sex couples based on their religious beliefs. The bill would also prohibit the Georgia Department of Human Services from taking “adverse action” against such agencies. The bill passed 35-19 and will now head to the House for consideration.
Senate Bill 375, called the “Keep Faith in Adoption and Foster Care Act,” was introduced earlier this month by state Sen. William Ligon (photo), who added similar language to an adoption overhaul at the end of last year’s legislative session, causing the bill to stall. A Senate Judiciary sub-committee met on Feb. 8 to take up the bill, moving to send it on to the full committee, which passed the bill on Feb. 20.
Senators debated the bill for over an hour, and the 2015 Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage was a hot topic throughout, with several senators who support the bill quoting directly from the ruling. Sen. Ligon and other supporters of the bill continued to try and make the case that passage of the bill would lead to more adoption opportunities in the state and not less.
The bill now moves to the Georgia House.
— AJC (@ajc) February 23, 2018
The Georgia State Senate passed a dangerous religious exemption bill that would allow taxpayer-funded agencies to deny adoption requests from LGBTQ couples and refuse service to LGBTQ youth. #GApol #SB375 https://t.co/A32JoM35PL
— GLAAD (@glaad) February 23, 2018
— David Crary (@CraryAP) February 23, 2018
The Georgia Senate passed SB 375, a bill that would allow child welfare organizations — including adoption and foster care agencies — to turn away qualified Georgians seeking to care for a child in need, including #LGBTQ couples. https://t.co/oywZYxcuaf
— Human Rights Campaign (@HRC) February 23, 2018