Focus of Adoption Is Best Interests of Child – Not Adults

Family First Media Release 30 July 2011
Family First NZ is rejecting a call from Labour to ‘modernise’ adoption laws.

“The purpose of adoption is not to provide a child to adults, but rather to provide a family to a child,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “Same sex couple and single parent adoption and surrogacy potentially harms children because it intentionally creates motherless and fatherless families. There is no shortage of couples willing to adopt.”

“While a compassionate and caring society always comes to the aid of motherless and fatherless families, it is dangerous ground to intentionally create fatherless or motherless families.”

“Research on de-facto couples reveals that many cohabiting relationships are relatively transient, even where children are involved. A Norway study found that children of cohabiting couples were 2½ times more likely to experience parental divorce, and a massive British study found that ‘nearly one in two cohabiting parents split up before their child’s fifth birthday compared to one in 12 married parents’ and three quarters of family breakdown affecting young children involves unmarried parents.”

“The argument of discrimination and rights doesn’t apply because the law already discriminates against single men adopting girls, couples adopting under the age of 25, adults in a polygamist relationship adopting, and an adult with a record of violence.”

“Non-discrimination and adult human rights in adoption is an adult-centred policy. The granting of special rights to some – in this case single adults, and same-sex and de facto couples – can also mean that other people (children) lose their rights. But we must give primary consideration to the best interests of the child.”

The Spanish Association of Paediatrics has opposed same-sex adoption and a multi-party Commission of the French National Assembly in Jan 2006 said “the best interests of the child must prevail over adult freedom… even including the lifestyle choices of parents.” The Commission did not support adoption by single parents or same sex couples.

“Research is clear that children do best with their biological parents married to each other and is superior to any other structure. While not always possible because of breakdown, death and other factors, when we look at the difficult issue of adoption, we must aim to give the child to be adopted the very best option we can – to be adopted by a mum and a dad,” says Mr McCoskrie.

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