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Scottish government to withhold results of homosexual adoption study

Catholic News Agency

Edinburgh, United Kingdom, Mar 13, 2009 / 01:49 am (CNA).- The Scottish Government is drawing criticism for saying that the results of an official investigation into the effects of homosexual adoption in Scotland will not be made public. The announcement comes soon after Cardinal Keith O’Brien urged the government to promote adoption rather than permit same-sex couples to foster children.

In 2006 the Scottish Government passed laws allowing same-sex couples to adopt. The government is now working to permit same-sex couples to become foster parents.

Scottish Ministers began an investigation into the effects of homosexual adoption on children last month. The news that the results will not be published has sparked concerns that they may contain findings which would alarm the public, the Christian Institute reports.

Mike Judge, Head of Communications at the Christian Institute, criticized the concealment of the investigation results.

“This is an issue of massive public interest – we are talking about the country’s most vulnerable youngsters.

“We all deserve to know the outcome and the fact it is not being published will raise concern that ministers know their findings may alarm the public,” he said.

Last month, two middle-aged Edinburgh grandparents were told by officials that they would not see their grandchildren again unless they dropped their opposition to the children’s adoption by two homosexual men. The case sparked significant controversy.

The Equality Act passed by the British Parliament forced many Catholic adoption agencies to close or to cut their ties with the Catholic Church because the Catholic groups would not adopt children to homosexual couples.

In a March 9 statement, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh Cardinal Keith O’Brien called proposals to allow same-sex couples to become foster parents “as misguided and inappropriate as the previous change to allow same sex adoption.”

“In a consultation at the time of the change in adoption law, 80% of respondents opposed the change yet the Government ignored their concerns and changed the law. I urge the Scottish Government not to jeopardize the welfare of children who need foster care in a similar way," the cardinal added.

He argued that there is no evidence the change would widen the pool of potential foster carers. He said “a mass of evidence” attests to the instability of unmarried relationships and same-sex partnerships, “yet worryingly it is ignored.”

“Since less than two percent of the population is homosexual and a minority of this group are in a stable relationship, which would allow consideration as foster parents, It is difficult to see how the changes
advocated can have any meaningful impact on the widening the potential pool of foster families,” he continued.

“In any case, why not simply launch a high profile campaign urging more couples to consider fostering?

“For my own part I appeal to Scotland’s 250,000 Catholic families and to the thousands of Catholic couples married in our churches every year to consider sharing the love and stability which I hope fills your homes with a child who has little or no experience of either, by offering to foster."