Tonight voters in Arkansas approved an initiative that bans anyone who lives with a partner he or she is not married to from fostering or adopting children in the state. While the proponents of the initiative made no bones about the fact that this initiative was targeted at lesbian and gay couples, it is the many children in the state’s foster care system who will be hurt the most by this initiative. At any given time, there are 450 – 500 Arkansas children who need adoptive homes. This initiative only serves to limit the already limited pool of parents willing to foster and adopt. Initiated Act 1 affects both straight and gay families and offers no exceptions whatsoever — it doesn’t matter whether the prospective parent is a blood relative, is the person the child’s biological parents want to raise their child, or is best-qualified to handle a special-needs child.
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