An LGBTQ group says the signing of a bill allowing for agencies to deny services on the basis of religion is disappointing, but not surprising.
Freedom Oklahoma Executive Director Troy Stevenson says Fallin’s signature on Senate Bill 1140 will make it harder for the 16,000 kids in state care to find homes.
He says he doesn’t understand the argument from supporters saying this will increase the number of agencies for kids to get adopted.
“It’s ridiculous. I mean, the entire concept is backwards. You don’t limit the number of families and expect to get more kids into them. There’s never been a shortage of agencies in Oklahoma doing child welfare work, there’s always been a shortage of families willing to take kids in.”
Stevenson admits LGBTQ couples can still adopt, but he says it’s heartbreaking to have this kind of stigma attached to it.
Fallin is directing the Department of Human Services to provide an online list of agencies where families can go without fear of discrimination.
Stevenson says this sounds awfully familiar.
“There was something back in the days of segregation called the Green Book that African Americans, when they were driving across the country, they would have to look through this book to see which gas stations they could stop at, which hotels they could go into without being turned away.”
He says Freedom Oklahoma is currently talking with its lawyers and the ACLU to consider a possible challenge to what he calls state-funded discrimination.
The measure takes effect November First.