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Religious Groups Blocking Foster Care?

Religious Groups Blocking Foster Care?


Three religious agencies in Illinois that receive public funds are under investigation for possibly violating antidiscrimination laws because they rejected openly gay people as foster parents.

Millions of dollars in state funding could be pulled from Lutheran Child and Family Services, Catholic Charities, and the Evangelical Child and Family Agency, affecting 3,000 children in the foster care system, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The issue came to the forefront when a gay couple who was interested in fostering a gay runaway was turned away by the Lutheran group in 2010.

A civil unions bill, which Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law in January, does address the rights of same-sex couples and allows religious institutions to decide whether they will accommodate gays and lesbians. However, the Tribune points out, the bill does not address the rights of same-sex parents or the rights of families.

The Illlinois Department of Children and Family services, the state legal team, and Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan are looking at that law, the state antidiscrimination law, and the Illinois constitution to see if there was a violation.

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