Fairness in Oklahoma. Adoption decision called monumental for lesbian and gay parents nationwide.

The Oklahoma Health Department announced that it will not appeal a ruling earlier this month that struck down a state law refusing Oklahoma birth certificates to children adopted by out-of-state same-sex couples.

“This is a monumental decision, not just for the couples involved in the case, but for lesbian and gay parents and their children nationwide,” said Jon Davidson, Legal Director of Lambda Legal. “It means that when same-sex couples have an adoption decree recognizing both of them as parents, the adoption, and their status as their child’s parents, must be honored no matter where they go.”

The Adoption Invalidation Law, hastily passed at the end of the 2004, had said that Oklahoma “shall not recognize an adoption by more than one individual of the same sex from any other state or foreign jurisdiction.” The Oklahoma Department of Health wanted a law so extreme that it threatened to make children adopted by same-sex couples in other states legal orphans if the families traveled or moved to Oklahoma.

Lambda Legal argued that the law was unconstitutional. The court agreed that the statute violates the United States Constitution by refusing to honor adoption decrees obtained in other states.