Civil rightsHot SheetLegislature

One Colorado says Republican bill aims to block LGBTQ adoptions

Author: Joey Bunch - April 23, 2018 - Updated: April 23, 2018

adoptionsOne Colorado executive director Daniel Ramos speaks at a rally at the state Capitol in February in defense of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. (Photo courtesy of One Colorado via Facebook)

Advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Coloradans plan to put up a fight over a bill they say would allow organization to factor religion into adoptions and foster care decisions.

That would allow them to discriminate, said One Colorado, the state’s largest LGBTQ advocacy organization.

Senate Bill 241 will be heard after the Senate State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee convenes at 1:30 p.m. The bill “prohibits the state government from taking certain adverse action against a person or organization for their religious beliefs in relation to adoptive and foster care services.”

The same committee will hear House Bill 1245, legislation to ban conversion therapy for LGBTQ minors by licensed therapist that passed the House 36-26 on April 5. Republican Rep. Dan Thurlow of Grand Junction voted with the Democrats.

The ban has passed the House in each of the last three years, only to die in the Senate kill committee.

And if the religious test for adoption makes it to the House before the General Assembly adjourns on May 9, Democrats will be waiting there to kill it. Such legislation going against a hostile majority are called message bills, aimed to satisfy a base of voters more than possibly becoming law, given the odds.

One Colorado is planning a press conference in the West Foyer of the Capitol at 12:45 p.m. Monday.

“Perennial proponents of anti-LGBTQ legislation, Sen. Kevin Lundberg and Rep. Steve Humphrey, have proposed Senate Bill 241, which would not only allow any adoption or foster care agency to prevent a loving, stable, safe home from adopting a child, just because that home doesn’t pass a religious test, but it endangers children as well,” One Colorado said in a press advisory.

“It would supersede other laws that protect kids and open the door to a wide range of physical, emotional and psychological child abuse, as long as that abuse does not ‘imminently and seriously endanger a minor’s physical health,’ and as long as the parents claimed it was based on religious beliefs or moral convictions.”

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch is the senior political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has a 31-year career in journalism, including the last 15 in Colorado. He was part of the Denver Post team that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2013 and is a two-time Pulitzer finalist. His resume includes covering high school sports, the environment, the casino industry and civil rights in the South, as well as a short stint at CNN.