Monday 8th April 2013

The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) is urging the Tasmanian Government to reject changes to adoption laws expected to be debated this week in parliament that would deny children the right to be raised by a mother and father.

ACL’s Tasmanian Director Mark Brown said not only does it ignore the rights of the child but there is no need for the laws to change with very few children surrendered for adoption.

The proposed changes to the Adoption Act would allow unmarried and same-sex couples to adopt children given up by their biological parents.

Mr Brown said it is the duty of governments to always act in the best interests of children.

“All things being equal, children have the right to both a mother and a father. We know that through tragedy or desertion this is not always possible but adoption is one area where governments can restore this important value for the benefit of children,” Mr Brown said.

“There is no logical reason to suggest that changing the current Adoption Act is needed when the needs of children have not changed and when there are so few adoptions anyway. Adoption is about the needs of these children, not the desires of adults.

“Statistics show that in 2011, there were only two Australian children surrendered for ‘unknown’ adoptions and only four intercountry adoptions in the same period,” he said.

“Given there is no demand for more parents for adopted children – why is this being pushed ahead? What’s the real agenda here?” Mr Brown said.

Mr Brown said a change to adoption legislation would be nonsensical, as it would deny the importance of motherhood and fatherhood.

“Fathers and mothers parent differently from one another, and providing that diversity in a child’s upbringing is important for their development,” he said.

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