Colombia’s government asked congress on Thursday to push legislation to allow adoption for gay couples, a day after the Constitutional Court ruled that under the current law this is not allowed.
The government said that it respects and abides by the decision of the Constitutional Court to ban the adoption of children by same-sex couples.
However, given that the court ruled in favor of the request for joint parenthood, Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo clarified that “gay couples can only adopt when the request is about the biological child of the partner.”
According to Cristo, it is very important that the Congress’ discussions occur in a framework of respect for those who are for and against gay adoption.
“All these debates are very important for democracy and society and it is imperative that they are met in Congress in a tone of respect and with a constructive attitude,” he said.
Cristo went on to say that “there are different positions, all very respectable and valid with justifications.” However he also emphasized the need to guarantee equal rights and non-discrimination to the LGBTI community.
“It would be very important for the country to move forward in ensuring non-discrimination against same-sex couples,” he added.
Before the Constitutional Court ruled, Cristo had announced his support for the possibility that homosexuals could adopt.
The decision of the constitutional court was met with mixed feelings by Colombia Diversa, the country’s most prominent gay rights organization.
“The country proved to be ripe and ready for equality. The court consolidated the right to adopt the biological son or daughter of the partner in all cases. However, it is indebted to equality due to its decision on joint adoption. The court took one step forward but failed to take the other,” Colombia Diversa director Mauricio Albarracin said.
Colombia’s Catholic Church, supported by the church-loyal Conservative Party, has long resisted granting equal rights to gay couples, which has generated controversy among scholars and in the media.
Gay couples gained the right to marry in 2013, but only after Congress for years on end failed to approve of legislation that would regulate gay rights in the country.
Gobierno pide llevar al Congreso debate sobre adopción gay (El Espectador)