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6 Mar 2001

anti-gay adoption bill defeated

By one vote, an Arksansas bill that would prevent gay and lesbian couples from adopting children was defeated in the House of State.

In a move that delighted many gay and lesbian would-be parents in the state of Arkansas, USA, an anti-gay bill allowing children to be placed with gay and lesbian foster parents was defeated. The vote came out 10-9. 11 votes are needed for the bill to reach the full Arkansas State House. As this bill had been submitted for the second time this year, it cannot be resubmitted until the current legislative term is over, which is next year.

Psychiatrists had been brought in to argue the merits of the bill, but in the end, Doctor Andre Derdeyn's view - that children need loving, responsible parents who are invested in them - won out. Dr Derdeyn is director of the University of Arkansas child and adolescent psychiatry training programme.

The Arkansas Child Welfare Agency officially ban fostering by gay and lesbian parents, although there is no rule against adoption. Only three states in the US ban gay adoption, namely Utah, Mississippi and Florida.

United States

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