House Bill 110 was introduced on February 16, and it includes a three-word change with major implications for LGBTQ+ couples in Ohio.
Embedded on page 606 of the 2057-page document, under the section, “The following persons may adopt,” the words “husband and wife” have been replaced with “legally married couple.”
With so many barriers still existing for LGBTQ+ families in the adoption process, the three-word substitution is a step forward in helping to increase successful adoption opportunities.
To get an expert reaction, The Buckeye Flame spoke with Molly Rampe Thomas, Founder & Adoption Assessor at Choice Network in Worthington, an Ohio agency with policies and practices that received the highest level of recognition by the Human Rights Campaign’s All Children – All Families Project.
This three-word change is a positive step, right?
Absolutely. The way that Ohio has approached adoption in the past was always not good for pregnant people, children, families, or communities. Any move to be more inclusive of all families is a beautiful step forward in that process.
You have worked with a lot of LGBTQ+ couples in Ohio?
We really have. We are the only infant placing agency in the state of Ohio with the Innovative Tiers of Recognition from HRC. The pregnant people we work with are often looking for nontraditional families, and with LGBTQ+ couples, adoption is almost always their Plan A. LGBTQ+ couples understand openness. Building community and building family is how they roll, and it’s natural to them to create this village.
So yay for these three new words!
Yes! I’m glad Ohio is finally taking a step in the right direction. Ohio rarely takes steps to support women, so this is great and welcome change to see.
We also do want to remind people that single dads and single moms adopt all the time. You don’t have to be a legally married couple to have a beautiful and successful adoption experience.
- Learn more about the All Children – All Families initiative.
- Reach out to one of the agencies above to discuss whether fostering/adopting children might be right for you.