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Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
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9/16/11  2:11 pm
Commenter: Rebecca Ricardo, Coordinators2inc

Specifically addressing the anti-discrimination statement

I hope to have additional comments about the entire regulation but seeing so many comments related to the anti-discrimination statement, I wanted to get this into the dialogue.

I believe the the Commonwealth can clarify that the anti-discrimination clause is connected to not denying APPLICATION to become foster or adoptive parents without compelling anyone to APPROVE everyone who applies. If the statement is written to state you cannot deny APPLICATION to become a foster/adoptive parent based on age, race, sexual orientation, religion, disablity, etc... if would allow agencies who want to consider a wider range of family types to do so, but doesn't force an agency to approve that family if that family who applies does not meet their criteria for APPROVAL.

I think this would solve the concern raised by some religous groups that they would be forced to approve families they do feel are appropriate based on religious convictions.  It is not unlike how agencies NOW make different choices related to age, how many divorces, single parents, etc...many of us use different criteria based on our philisophical beliefs about what best meets the needs of children.

Allowing some agencies to openly accept LGBT families doesn't force others to do so. Again, link the anti-discrimination statement to APPLICATION and leave the decision regarding approval and placement up to each individual agencies professional opinion.

CommentID: 18454