There are no plans to retract the ban on gay and unmarried couples from adopting children in Northern Ireland, the country’s Attorney General has said.
John Larkin QC, added that rather than satisfying the wishes of prospective parents, the law was formulated to ensure the welfare of the child, and that it was up to the Stormont Assembly to make any amendments as it sees fit.
These comments were made in the context of a judicial review brought forth by the NI Human Rights Commission last December. The plantiffs for the case, with the additional backing of an unidentified lesbian couple seeking to adopt, argue that the law in Northern Ireland is at odds with the rest of the UK and thus is discriminatory against same-sex and unmarried couples.
Mr Larkin, representing the Department of Health, has said that what “happens in Scotland, England and Wales does not constitute a line into which Northern Ireland must be brought,” according to the BBC. In addition, the decision to exclude same-sex couples was not accidental, he submitted, and that the position as it stands now was “deliberate (and) open-eyed.”