Should married couples be given preferential treatment when it comes to adoption? Utah is currently the only U.S state that requires priority for married couples in the adoption process, but Arizona may soon follow in Utah's footsteps with the growing support for Senate Bill 1188.
The Arizona Republic reports that Senate Bill 1188 failed to win support last year in the Legislature, but that the bill is being brought up once again in this legislative session. The idea for the law was reportedly proposed by the Center for Arizona Policy, a conservative organization in the state that lobbies for family values and the sanctity of marriage.
Senate Bill 1188 proposes the requirement of an adoption agency in Arizona to give primary consideration to adoptive placement with a married man and married woman. The law would only permit a single person to adopt a child in the state if a married couple is not available to adopt or if the single person looking to adopt is a legal relative of the child. An adoption entity may also consider a single parent adoption if the alternative for the child is extended foster care or if a meaningful relationship has already been established between the child and single person. Full text of the bill can be found by clicking here.
Passage of such a law would make it difficult for same-sex couples to adopt a child because same-sex marriage is prohibited in the state. The language of Senate Bill 1188 also prioritizes adoption for a "married man and woman." Some opponents of the law say that such a policy might decrease the number of people willing to consider adopting children, including single people or same-sex couples that are fully capable of being good parents. Yet proponents of the law say that every adopted child deserves to have a mom and a dad.