I am the Chief administrative officer of a local government in Virginia, and have been for over 20 years. I am also a Christian and wish to make the following points:
1. The State Board of Social Services correctly upheld the fundamental right of faith-based agencies to continue their work WITHOUT governmental intrusion into the practice of their faith..
2. Faith based agencies have a right to make decisions consistent with their religious beliefs, including beliefs about marriage and family life. This right MUST be respected and preserved.
3. Many birthparents and prospective adoptive parents hold these beliefs as well,l and they have every right to work with agencies that share their values.
4. Forcing agencies and individuals to choose between following their own values or following the law would be an unprecedented violation fo religious freedom in VA. Religious liberty is foundational to our Commonwealth and our country.