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Gay pride focuses on adoption rights

Published on 09/05/2005

9 May 2005

BRUSSELS – Gay couples living in Belgium could soon gain adoption rights, French-language daily La Derniere Heure has reported.

Gay couples already have the right to marry in Belgium, and many would also like to adopt children.

This dream could soon become a reality, as Belgium’s federal parliament could hold a vote on the issue in the next few weeks.

The mood at last Saturday’s annual Gay Pride parade in Brussels, a colourful celebration of the city’s gay community, was thus one of relative optimism.

“I think that at this stage, we have obtained a majority from the Ecolo (Greens), the VLD (Flemish Liberal Democrats) and SP.A (a branch of the Socialist Party) to vote in favour of a new law authorizing adoption for homosexual couples,” Socialist federal deputy Marie-Claire Lambert said on Saturday.

Psychologists who appeared before a parliamentary commission that has studied the question of gay marriage assured the deputies that the education and psychological well-being of a child is not adversely affected if it is raised by two people of the same sex, she added.

New figures were also revealed on Saturday by Kathleen van Brempt, the Flemish minister for equal opportunities.

“Today, 12 percent of children grow up in gay, lesbian or bisexual families already,” she said, urging Belgium’s federal parliament to approve adoption rights for gays.

According to a recent survey conducted by the University of Ghent in Flanders, 42 percent of gays and lesbians in Belgium would like to have children.

This figure climbs to 55 percent for gay women, many of whom opt for the option of artificial insemination to have a child.

More than 60 percent of gay men who want children, by contrast, would prefer to adopt.

[Copyright Expatica 2005]

Subject: Belgian news