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By Dawn Wolfe Gutterman
LANSING – On March 8 the Michigan Women’s Commission, a bi-partisan commission within the state’s Department of Civil Rights, voted to support Representative Paul Condino’s bill that would allow second parent adoption in Michigan.
According to the Coalition for Adoption Rights Equality, the Michigan Women’s Commission is the first statewide organization with Republican Party members to fully support HB 5399.
“We’re very excited that the Women’s Commission voted to support the bill,” said Bev Davidson, CARE president. “It certainly impacts the women of Michigan, and having their support will be very helpful in gaining more organizational support throughout the state.”
The Michigan Women’s Commission joins over a dozen statewide and regional professional, religious and community organizations in supporting HB 5399, which would protect children by giving them a legal relationship with both of their parents regardless of their parents’ marital status. Having a legal relationship with both parents protects children in issues ranging from custody to the provision of health insurance to inheritance rights. National organizations that support second parent adoption include the American Medical Association, the Child Welfare League of America and the American Bar Association. As of press time, 29 Michigan representatives in addition to Rep. Condino had signed on as sponsors of the bill.
According to the MWC’s analysis of the bill, “Second parent adoption ensures permanency and creates legal relationships with two parents, thereby increasing the financial security of the child and preventing costs to the taxpayer.”
After noting the organizations in support of the legislation, the MWC notes only one Michigan organization, the anti-gay Michigan Family Forum, as being opposed to HB 5399.