LGBT advocates fight Catholic Charities' threat to stop adoptions if civil unions are legalized

Categories: News, Politics

catholic charities testifies civil unions bill.jpg
Video below.
Gay advocacy group One Colorado has started an online petition to fight against what it calls "scare tactics" by Catholic Charities, whose reps testified at the Capitol last week that if lawmakers legalize civil unions, it may stop providing adoption and foster care services. Why? Because civil unions could lead to same-sex marriage, which Catholics oppose.

That was the word from Colleen Haggerty, who spoke on behalf of Catholic Charities and the Archdiocese of Denver. "We hold the institution of marriage and the family a sacred pillar of our faith," she said, noting that Senate Bill 2, which would authorize any two unmarried adults -- regardless of gender -- to enter into a civil union, "undermines the privileged place of marriage."

The bill, she said, "may unnecessarily jeopardize services to the children in the most need of our help" -- kids requiring foster care and those up for adoption. "These are the very people who would be hurt," she added.

Bill sponsor Senator Pat Steadman, a Denver Democrat, challenged Haggerty. "I don't understand how this bill would impact you and in fact, I'm wondering if you've read the bill," he said. "Because on page eighteen, it clearly states that, 'This bill is not to be interpreted to require child placement agencies to place a child for adoption with a couple that has entered into a civil union.' So I'm not understanding your objections."

"I have read the bill, and I have it right here," Haggerty said. "I believe I said that in other states that have this -- this is setting a precedent...where civil unions lead to the recognition of same-sex marriage. Innate in our faith and the cornerstone of what the Catholic church believes is the institution of marriage is one man and one woman, so to recognize this in any other way would go against what we believe."

"And for that you'd stop serving the vulnerable in our state?" Steadman asked.

"That's not what I said," Haggerty said.

Later, in response to a question, Steadman said, "The abandonment of a charitable mission because we have to be charitable to all is a rather disappointing position."

One Colorado agrees. In an e-mail to supporters titled "Shocking," director Brad Clark wrote, "You know what scares me the most? Catholic Charities is putting vulnerable children in the middle of this debate, and I don't want thousands of kids to become collateral damage in the crossfire. That's just not right.

"I hope you'll help us send a message to Catholic Charities. A message of appreciation for the important work they do -- and a request for that work to continue, even after all families are granted equal protection under the law."

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the bill on February 15. Click here to watch Steadman's testimony. And watch video of Catholic Charities' testimony below.

More from our Politics archive: "Proposition 8 ruling: Could it make legislatures gun shy about civil unions?"

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Let’s call it by its real name, anything dealing with the church,is backward, they are all bigots. Plus the Republican Party is totally controlledby the church, the church says jump the good republican stooges say how highmaster.

 What gets me all inthe fights for gay marriage is whoever is fighting for it never says that it islegal in 23 countries, Either full gay marriage, civil unions (full rights) orcommon law.

 I’m a gay male, hadto get married in Canada and on top off all that because of the unconstitutionallaw DOMA I can’t sponsor him into the country.

 You have to listen toSenator Jeff Sessions what a bigot right wing stooge!

Marco Luxe
Marco Luxe

I heard that Catholic Charities gets 62% of its budget from government contracts.  There are many other non-discriminatory social service agencies that would like a shot at this $2.9 billion Catholic Charities got in 2010.  Catholic Charities needs govt funds more than we need them.  Let them bloviate all they want. 

By the way, there are great people at Catholic Charities doing amazing work.  Now if they could only get free of the Vatican hierarchy that make these terrible power-based ideological decisions that run contrary to the teachings of Jesus.   

Board members in MA resigned when the archbishop dictated policy.  More should. 


this just goes to show you that they really don't care about the people they say they care for! use kids as a chip to get there way.  why don't they look at the other 23 countries where there is full gay marriage or full civil unions. Moral, morals so they are saying the morals of Canada, Spain, isreal Nepal is lower then in this country give me a break!

Michael Robinson
Michael Robinson

Geez...get informed.  Regardless of your personal opinions on same sex relationships, there are volumes of scientific daae (yes, science and religion actually do have common ground) demonstrating the value of the male and female in the development of a child.  Does child get it...nope, but scientifically, we are making things worse if we don't strive to bring kids up in a 2 parent, male/female household.

Eurice Thompson
Eurice Thompson

Perhaps the best place for those kids is something better than intolerant environment of Catholic Charities. Perhaps they're better off elsewhere. People with such appalling views are better off not being anywhere near children.


Catholic charities are great, but only if you're white, straight, and Catholic.




Nope, you've got it backwards. All of the evidence shows that LGBT households are excellent environments for children.

Timothy J. Biblarz & Judith Stacey, How Does the Gender of Parents Matter?, 72 Journal of Marriage and Family 3 (Feb. 2010): "The gender of parents correlates in novel ways with parentchild relationships but has minor significance for children’s psychological adjustment and social success."

Child Welfare League of America: "CWLA, therefore, affirms that gay, lesbian, and bisexual parents are as well suited to raise children as their heterosexual counterparts."

The Effects of Marriage, Civil Union, and Domestic Partnership Laws on the Health and Well-being of Children, 118 PEDIATRICS 349 (2006): "[F]ew differences have been found in research conducted over the last 3 decades comparing lesbian and heterosexual mothers' self-esteem, psychological adjustment, and attitudes toward child rearing."

American Medical Association: "Our AMA will support legislative and other efforts to allow the adoption of a child by the same-sex partner, or opposite sex non-married partner, who functions as a second parent or co-parent to that child."

American Psychiatric Association: "The American Psychiatric Association supports initiatives which allow same-sex couples to adopt and co-parent children and supports all the associated legal rights, benefits, and responsibilities which arise from such initiatives."

American Psychoanalytic Association: "Gay and lesbian individuals and couples are capable of meeting the best interest of the child and should be afforded the same rights and should accept the same responsibilities as heterosexual parents."

North American Council on Adoptable Children: "NACAC opposes rules and legislation that restrict the consideration of current or prospective foster and adoptive parents based on their sexual orientation."

Canadian Psychological Association: "A review of the psychological research into the well-being of children raised by same-sex and opposite-sex parents continues to indicate that there are no reliable differences in their mental health or social adjustment and that lesbian mothers and gay fathers are not less fit as parents than are their heterosexual counterparts."

American Academy of Pediatrics: "gay and lesbian individuals can be successful parents themselves."

... and so on.


Sources, please?  That's what I thought.  Check this out:  There are volumes of data that say Michael Robinson is a biased douchebag who lies about scientific studies.  Did you see what I did there?  I made a wild claim and skewed a single data point to support my claim.  It wasn't that hard.  You should make more of an effort next time.


Actually, studies have shown that children who grow up in loving environments end up being well-balanced, functioning, productive adults. Even less shocking is that studies have indeed shown that children brought up in households with same sex parents tend to be more well adjusted than the children of two parent/two gender households. No studies have shown that parents of different genders are the most apt to provide such a loving, healthy environment that no other alternative is possible. Get your scientific facts straight before you start spouting off "scientific daae", whatever that is. 


Snap out of it, you intolerant religious bigot.

Know what you're talking about next time you post..Where's it up to you to say "were making it worse........". Making what worse?

So a child doesn't get adapted if the option is two gay parents or no adoption?

Two people that love each other and care enough about doing right by their community, by a child that will benefit from moving from chaos to a loving home, and will add to our society by providing the essential environment for a child to grow to be a productive citizen, and catholic charities thinks they have the moral authority to say no?

Because of what, that they're gay?

And you agree with that? Who do you think you are?

The catholic church is the very last institution I can think of to be wagging a finger, judging, and determining some one's life course based on a life style.

The catholic church is a bully. A bully with way too much baggage to even consider preaching values to anyone, at any time, in any circumstance, and under any condition.

A bully that might want to clean its' own pigsty before deciding what's an "acceptable lifestyle" for anyone.........I mean anyone...........else.

You know exactly what I'm referring to..

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

Lots of information here, Matty. Thanks for sharing it.

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