Hooray! Gay couples can now officially foster children in Nebraska
A judge in the US state of Nebraska has officially ended a policy which prevented same-sex couples from becoming foster parents to children.
District Judge John Colborn, this week ruled that the rules, pointing to the recent Supreme Court ruling which deemed marriage a constitutional right for all couples across the US.
The policy was created in 1995, but the Department of Health and Human Services, had stopped enforcing it in 2012.
But the Lancaster County judge has now officially ended any confusion, by ruling that the policy was unconstitutional.
The confusion had led to same-sex couples being required to have a five-tier review from caseworkers, supervisors and administrators, compared to a two-tier review for opposite-sex couples.
The ruling came in response to three groups suing the state on behalf of several same-sex couples/
“This is a special victory for thousands of children in Nebraska who now have more options to find loving and stable homes,” said Danielle Conrad, executive director of the ACLU of Nebraska, one of the three groups.
State officials “have not argued, nor have they identified, any legitimate government interest to justify treating gay and lesbian individuals and gay and lesbian couples differently than heterosexual individuals and heterosexual couples in this review process,”wrote the judge.