A petition drive is underway in Arkansas to force a vote on lesbian and gay parents. An ultra-conservative group wants to prohibit minors from being adopted or placed in a foster home in which a would-be parent is “cohabiting with a sexual partner outside of a marriage which is valid under the constitution and laws of this state.”
The group’s called the Arkansas Family Council Action Committee, and it’s seeking signatures throughout an established network of churches. It’s a political wing of the Family Council.
The language used in the proposal aims to make sexuality neutral in the adoption and foster care decision process. The proposed legislation would allow single people, even gay ones, to adopt and serve as foster parents. But a couple living together – gay or straight – cannot adopt if voters approve the change.
NWANews.com reports the petition needs at least 61,974 Arkansas registered voter signatures to qualify the measure for the ballot November 4th.
Countering the assault – a coalition of doctors, ministers, and children’s advocates officially organized to campaign against the proposal. Arkansas Families First filed papers with Secretary of State Charlie Daniels to form a ballot question committee, which is necessary to raise and spend money on the campaign.
Recent poll figures show 53 percent of prospective voters would approve the ban, while 42 percent would reject it. Five percent of those questioned either had no opinion or refused to answer. The poll surveyed 754 Arkansans by telephone – in October.
The ACLU produced a video which introduces viewers to individuals whose lives would be directly affected.