Germany proposes adoption rights for gays

1st July 2004, Comments 0 comments

1 July 2004 , BERLIN – Three years after it moved to bring gay relationships into line with married couples, Germany's centre-left coalition government has stepped up efforts to improve homosexual rights.

1 July 2004

BERLIN – Three years after it moved to bring gay relationships into line with married couples, Germany's centre-left coalition government has stepped up efforts to improve homosexual rights.

This week Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's Social Democrat-led Government unveiled legislation that would permit a homosexual to co-adopt the child of a gay partner.

The legislation, which faces an uphill battle for enactment in the conservative-controlled upper house of parliament, stops short of allowing gay couples to adopt children.

Instead, it would permit a parent who already has a child to offer that child for "co-adoption" by his or her gay partner. The gay partnership would have to be registered with local authorities under terms of a 2001 law granting homosexual couples limited legal rights.

The new legislation would give gay parents equal rights and responsibilities in raising children, said Justice Minister Brigitte Zypries.

"But it must be stressed that this is not a blank cheque for gays to adopt children," said Greens MP Volker Beck, who co-sponsored the bill. "It does however permit children who are the offspring of one partner to be co-adopted by the other gay partner in the relationship. The best interests of the child are always the priority."

Conservatives vowed to prevent the legislation from becoming law.

"This is an assault on family values and Christian traditions," said Christian Social Union (CSU) head Edmund Stoiber.

DPA

Subject: German news

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