Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer (R) on May 18 signed into law Senate Bill 284, which gives taxpayer-funded adoption and foster-care agencies a green light to use religion to justify discrimination against prospective parents.
Americans United President and CEO Rachel Laser condemned Colyer's decision.
"This law does a great disservice to kids in care," Laser said in a media statement. "Those children deserve loving, stable homes, and providing them should be Kansas' first priority. Senate Bill 284 works against that principle by allowing state-funded agencies to turn away prospective parents--in the name of religion--because they're a same-sex couple, interfaith, previously divorced or the 'wrong religion.' This law is indefensible."
Proponents claim SB 284 encourages more faith-based organizations to become child-placement agencies. But opponents counter that there is not a shortage of child-welfare agencies; instead, there is a shortage of families willing and able to foster and adopt children--and that shortage of families is only expected to grow under SB 284 and laws like it.
"Religious freedom should never be used to justify discrimination against people or cause them harm --yet that is...