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Gay couples to be allowed to adopt in Qld

AAP logoAAP 6/08/2016 By Darren Cartwright

Gay couples, singles and couples undergoing IVF treatment will be allowed to adopt children under proposed amendments to Queensland's Adoption Act.

Communities Minister Shannon Fentiman told reporters the amendments, to be introduced during the August sittings of parliament, would include removing the offence and penalty for a breach-of-contract statement for adoptions before June 1991.

She said the reforms, if passed, would bring the state into line with NSW, WA, Victoria and the ACT in allowing adoption by same-sex couples and singles.

"We are one of the few remaining states that does not allow same-sex couples to adopt but we are now overturning that legislation and that discrimination," Ms Fentiman said.

"This ensures the laws reflect community standards and expectations as well as meet the needs of children who require adoption now and into the future."

She said fewer than 50 children were adopted in Queensland in the past 12 months but the changes would mean couples who were step-parents, legal guardians or carers would be able to adopt.

Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays spokeswoman Shelley Argent said from a grandparent's perspective grandchildren would have emotional stability.

"People who are opposed to same-sex couples having children, they forget it's not just the parents and the child, it's grandparents and extended family (who are effected)," she said.

"We will now have these children officially in our lives."

Harrington Family Lawyer Stephen Page, who is a member of the International Surrogacy Forum and the Fertility Society of Australia, said sexuality should not be a factor about who adopts, "it's the quality of the parent".

The LNP opposition would not immediately throw its support behind the amendments.

"The LNP will review the Government's proposed legislation through the normal process," an LNP spokeswoman said.

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