Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Adopting in Euskal Herria

The winds of change blow through San Francisco and Iruñea, read this note today at Berria English:

Couple formed by two women allowed to adopt children in Iruñea

The case in Navarre is the first in the Basque Country in which the right of adoption for homosexuals has been exercised

Editorial Staff – IRUÑEA (Pamplona)
Last Friday the Family Court of Iruñea recognised the joint adoption of twin babies by a couple made up of two women, in accordance with the terms of the Law of Common Law Couples. One of the couple had two babies through artificial insemination a year ago. When the Law of Common Law Couples came into force in Navarre, the biological mother and her partner applied for the right to adopt the two children, and now the court has accepted their application. As a result, the two women are now the mothers of the two children. Furthermore, as the couple’s lawyer pointed out, “the resolution is permanent and no appeals can be lodged.”

The Parliament of Navarre passed the Law of Common Law Couples in July 2000. All the parties voted in favour, except the UPN. They filed an appeal against the law with the Spanish Constitutional Court. As Gehitu said, “they appealed through the normal channels and this will not force the law to be suspended, which is what happened to the Law of Common Law Couples of the Basque Autonomous Community.” So, for the present, in Navarre the law is in force awaiting the Constitutional Court’s resolution. The Basque Government passed the Law of Common Law Couples in May 2003. Article 8 of that law provides for same-sex couples to adopt children. Today, however, there is no possibility of that in the BAC (Basque Autonomous Community), because the Spanish Council of Ministers filed an appeal against the BAC Law of Common Law Couples and the law has been suspended as a result, for the time being.

The lawyer of the two women who were granted the joint adoption said, “the social movement has always been ahead of the legislators, but this could be the start and I hope it will go further.” The case proceeded slowly, said the lawyer, and added: “If it had been a heterosexual couple, the whole thing would have been faster.”

Gay and lesbian movements have welcomed the resolution. Imanol Alvarez, EHGAM’s spokesperson, told BERRIA, “this is the first time that one of the options made possible by the law has been implemented, in this case the right to adopt.” Alvarez added that it was good news for same-sex couples. “Couples often have children as a result of a previous relationship or as a result of artificial insemination. If something happened to the biological mother, her partner could not legally take charge of these children. That is unacceptable. It’s cruel. We have always fought for this option.” Gehitu spoke in the same terms yesterday, as soon as the resolution was made known. It hailed it as a historic decision.

.... ... .

No comments:

Post a Comment