Tas looks forward to same-sex adoption
The Tasmanian government is gearing up to grant full adoption rights to gay and lesbian couples.
Someone in a same-sex relationship has had the legal right to adopt their partner’s natural child for the last ten years, but so called “stranger adoption” – where a couple adopts a child given up by its biological parents – is currently restricted to opposite-sex couples.
Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesperson Rodney Croome has said the legislation would be in the best interests of children, because it would allow adoption agencies the fullest range of potential adoptive parents to choose from.
"Same-sex couples are just as capable as opposite-sex couples of providing children in need with a safe, secure, loving home life,” Croome said.
He said in particular children currently being fostered by same-sex couples would benefit from being adopted.
Same sex couples have been fostering in Tasmania for a very long time; same-sex partners can be named the legal parents of children born through IVF, and since last year same-sex surrogacy arrangements have been legal.
"The latest legislation simply brings the Adoption Act into line with the prevailing ethos of Tasmanian law which is that all couples and families should be treated equally," Croome said.
"It also eliminates the one last remnant of anti-gay discrimination from existing state law."
Same-sex couple adoption is legal in NSW, the ACT and WA.