Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Social Services
State Board of Social Services
Minimum Standards for Licensed Private Child-Placing Agencies [22 VAC 40 ‑ 131]
Action Adopt new standards for licensed private child-placing agencies.
Stage Proposed
Comment Period Ended on 4/1/2011
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4/1/11  5:35 pm
Commenter: James Park, Member of the public

Proposal to require private-run organizations process same-sex adoption applications

It is my understanding that the Virginia Department of Social Services has proposed regulations to require state licensed adoption agencies, including private church-run adoption agencies, to not refuse to process applications by same-sex couples for the adoption of children. 

I understand that there have been sociological studies that have looked at the raising of children by same-sex couples, whether those children have been adopted by those couples or are the biological children of one of the partners.  I believe those studies have shown that in comparison to adopted children raised by heterosexual couples, children raised by same-sex couples show greater propensity for psychological problems, including lower senses of self-esteem, depression, and higher rates of suicide.  These problems will place a greater demand on the social services of the State over time.  I respectfully submit that the Department of Social Services should look into the sociological studies to inform their decisions regarding the psychological health of adopted children and the demands this places on social services.

Additionally, I believe it is only appropriate that, if these proposed regulations move forward, that a conscience clause be added to allow church-run adoption agencies to opt out should their teachings not agree with the raising of adopted children by same-sex couples.  Not to do so and allow these regulations to go forward in their current wording, will force, if passed, these church-run agencies to shut down, thus denying heterosexual couples the opportunity to adopt children.

Respectfully submitted,

James Park

CommentID: 16813