Homosexual Couple Can Adopt, Says Nova Scotia Judge

HALIFAX, Nova Scotia, JULY 10, 2001 (Zenit.org).- A landmark court ruling says homosexual couples have the right to adopt children, making this Canadian province one of few that legally recognizes same-sex parents, the Globe and Mail newspaper reported.

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A provincial Supreme Court judge handed down a decision Monday that says the law preventing same-sex couples from adopting is unconstitutional and discriminates against unmarried heterosexual and homosexual couples, the paper said.

The case was launched by a lesbian couple who already have children, but who argued that they were being discriminated against because the province prevented both from being recognized as parents.

The two, who have raised the children since birth, filed an application under the Charter of Rights in October that argued the provincial Children and Family Services Act was prejudicial because it allowed joint adoption only by married couples.

The ruling means the children of unmarried common-law couples will now be able to register their relationships with both parents, inherit under the Intestate Succession Act and receive maintenance from both parents.

In her ruling, Justice Deborah Gass said families are an essential part of the democratic society and can´t be restricted based on sexual orientation.

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