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New amendment could change how you adopt privately in Georgia

Adoption gives you the chance to add a new child to your family. It's an experience many people wait years for, and they take considerable time and effort in pursuing the adoption. In the majority of cases, your religion, age and other factors don't play much of a role in the adoption as long as you meet the state or private agency's criteria.

That could change. A new adoption law update has been waiting for a final vote in the General Assembly. The law could grant "religious freedom" to private adoption agencies, making it easier for them to deny couples or individuals the right to adopt based on their religious preferences.

The two-page amendment discusses whether or not those who have conflicting religious beliefs with state laws should be granted additional legal protections. One senator stated that the mission statement of an organization is to meet the needs of a specific community, and this law could allow that to continue.

Another senator disagreed with the amendment stating that it should be removed. The House Speaker hopes that the changes will be less about politics than doing what's right for the children, but some are not sure about that.

Changes like this could make it easier for a private adoption agency to deny you the right to adopt based on your religion. This wouldn't affect your right to adopt through the state or other public programs, but it would make it slightly more difficult for some to adopt through private agencies. In particular, the gay community has spoken out about the negatives of this amendment. Your attorney can help explain how you'll be affected if this amendment passes.

Source: Savannah Now, "Adoption law update lingers on Georgia lawmakers’ last day," March 30, 2017

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