Lesbian Couple Allowed to Adopt Despite Florida Gay Adoption Ban


When an infant relative of Vanessa Alenier was seized by child welfare workers, Ms. Alenier took the child into her home. However, when she asked Florida for permission to adopt the boy, a question on the adoption forms gave her pause. It asked if she was gay. Not wanting to begin her parental journey with a lie, she reported to the state that she is indeed gay, even though she knew that Florida has a thirty three year old law banning gays from adopting.

Even as a Miami appeals court was seeking to determine the constitutionality of the ban, Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Maria Sampedro-Iglesia approved the adoption – the third such adoption by a gay couple to be approved in Florida in the last year and a half.

Sampedro-Iglesia wrote in her order that, “there is no rational connection between sexual orientation and what is or is not in the best interest of a child. The child is happy and thriving with [Alenier]. The only way to give this child permanency . . . is to allow him to be adopted [by her].” She also declared in her ruling that she believed the law to be unconstitutional.

The Florida Department of Children and Families administrators objected to the adoption, but have not yet decided whether or not they will appeal the judge’s decision.

Find out more about the state of gay adoption in Florida at 3d strike against gay adoption ban in Fla.

If you are considering adoption, please contact our Jacksonville, Florida area law firm for legal counsel.

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