Christian couple urge Derby City Council to reconsider their foster application
A Christian couple prevented from becoming foster parents because of their views on homosexuality have re-submitted an application with Derby City Council
04/06/2011 UK (Christian Today)-The application submitted by Owen and Eunice Johns asks Derby City Council to change its policy on carers.
The council halted the couple’s previous application when they stated that they would not be able to promote the homosexual lifestyle to a child in their care.
The High Court upheld the council’s decision, saying in its ruling that equality provisions concerning sexual orientation should “take precedence” over those concerning freedom of religion and that it would not intervene if local councils rejected foster applications from Christians on the basis of their views on homosexuality.
Although the Johns’ application to foster children was halted, it remains technically outstanding.
In a letter to be handed to the head of adoption and fostering at Derby City Council today, the Johns will formally request that the council re-instate and continue to consider their application to become foster carers.
The letter reads: “You know that we would love and care for any child in our care and you are aware of our views on sexual ethics.
“However, the National Minimum Standards (NMS) on fostering, the Statutory Guidance, the Public Sector Equality Duty under the Equality Act 2010 and the Council’s own Equality and Diversity Policy do not require that ‘positive attitudes be demonstrated towards homosexuality’ (paragraph 101 of the High Court judgment).
“Such a requirement is not mandatory.”
They continue: “We believe that there is still space in the law for Christians to be accommodated in the fostering process and that the council can make a ‘permissible accommodation’ which would conform with NMS 7.2 and the Council’s Equality and Diversity Policy and that it can interpret the relevant policies in a manner that balances the rights of the homosexual community and the rights of those who subscribe to biblical views on sexual ethics.
“The courts are so set against religious freedom for Christians that an appeal is likely to only make matters worse,” he said.