A circuit judge in Florida struck down a three-decade old ban on gay adoption in the state, saying the policy conflicts with the aim of helping children.
“The best interests of children are not preserved by prohibiting homosexual adoption,” wrote Judge Cindy S. Lederman in her 53-page ruling on Nov 25.
The decision allows Martin Gill, a North Miami man, to adopt two half-brothers ages 8 and 4. He and his partner have been raising the boys as foster children since 2004. Florida law does not prohibit gay foster parenting.
In her legal reasoning, Judge Lederman said the gay adoption ban violated children’s right to permanency under state and federal law, and that it may violate the equal protection clause because it specifically focuses on gay people. The ban prevented gay singles and couples from adopting, unlike bans in Mississippi and Utah that target only gay couples.
The state has filed an appeal of the circuit court’s decision, according to CNN, with the aim of having the appellate court resolve the issue statewide.