Controversial adoption bills reintroduced in Michigan House

Feb 16, 2015

Lawmakers could again consider legislation that would protect faith-based adoption agencies. The bills would shield agencies that refuse to place children with particular families for religious reasons.

Every Democrat in the state House voted against two similar bills last year before they died in the Senate. But one of those Democrats says he has changed his mind on the issue and is now sponsoring one of the bills.

“I looked at it, what my faith teaches me, and what I know, and what my constituents have told me about what they feel and it’s something that I felt that I needed to take a stand on,” said Rep. Harvey Santana, D-Detroit.

Santana says he has no problem with someone who is LGBT adopting a child.

“I think that all children need a loving home,” he said. “However, we’re at the intersection between people’s faith and what they’re being told to do that interferes with their ability to morally practice their faith. And then having the state say you have to do this, there’s a problem there.”

Opponents of the legislation say it would allow agencies to discriminate against people who are LGBT. They say it would also undermine what is best for children.

Santana recently stopped caucusing with House Democrats, but he says that has nothing to do with his decision to support the measure.