From our content partner, the Arkansas News Bureau:
A state law banning unmarried, cohabiting couples from adopting children or becoming foster parents is unconstitutional, the Arkansas Supreme Court ruled unanimously today.
The high court upheld a Pulaski County circuit judge’s ruling that said the law unconstitutionally burdens fundamental privacy rights.
“Obviously we’re very pleased,” said Garrard Beeney, the lawyer for a group of Arkansas residents who challenged the law. “Now the Department of Human Services can get down to the business of evaluating applicants and acting in the best interests of children and making placements that make sense.”
Jerry Cox, president of the Christian conservative Family Council, said the decision “is the worst ever handed down by the Arkansas Supreme Court.”
“This is a classic example of judicial tyranny,” Cox said. “Unfortunately (Thursday’s) ruling puts the rights of adults ahead of the rights of children and their welfare.”
Cox said his group is considering asking voters to adopt the measure as a constitutional amendment.
The law, known as Act 1, was proposed to voters as a ballot initiative by the Family Council in November 2008 and passed with 57 percent of the vote. The Family Council proposed the initiative after a state policy against allowing same-sex couples to adopt or foster children was ruled unconstitutional.
You can read more background on the ruling and the court’s decision at this link.