See our Best of Detroit 2020 winners.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Snyder signs bill targeting adoption by LGBT families, expects litigation to follow

Posted By on Thu, Jun 11, 2015 at 1:49 PM

Republican Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law Thursday that will allow faith-based adoption groups to refuse to serve LGBT couples at their own discretion — and he expects litigation will be filed to challenge the statute's constitutionality. 

Contending the legislation affords Michigan children the "greatest opportunity" to be placed in a foster care home, Snyder praised the "public-private partnerships" that handle the state's adoption process in a statement Thursday. 

“We are focused on ensuring that as many children are adopted to as many loving families as possible regardless of their makeup," Snyder said. 

That would seemingly contradict with the law's language, which says neither the state, nor any municipality, could take an "adverse action" against an adoption agency — of which many receive public funding — for rejecting a couple based on "sincerely held religious beliefs."

Asked for comment, the governor's office pointed to the following passage in the law, which says any agency that declines service are required to "promptly" provide information and a list of alternative agencies that are — in the words of Snyder's office — "willing and able to serve them." 

Whether the law would stand up to legal scrutiny is "something we'll find out," Snyder told The Associated Press.

In an email to MT, Sara Wurfel, the governor's spokesperson, said the governor "doesn’t ever sign anything he believes would be unconstitutional."

"We can’t be clearer," Wurfel said. 'The governor’s and administration’s overarching goal and priority remains to get as many kids adopted in Michigan as possible with their forever family – regardless of the family’s makeup, whether heterosexual or LGBT." Wurfel said the legislation codifies practices already in place in the state. 

Given that the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to issue a ruling on same-sex marriage in the coming weeks, the decision by Snyder to sign the legislation was immediately met with vocal opposition by critics.

“Gov. Snyder has a history of siding with extreme corporate donors, but sacrificing the health and well-being of children is a new low — even for him,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of the Lansing-based liberal group Progress Michigan, in a statement. 

Tags: , , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

January 13, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit

© 2021 Detroit Metro Times - Contact Us

Website powered by Foundation