Friday, April 01, 2016

Court Strikes Down Mississippi's Ban On Adoption By Same-Sex Couples

In Campaign for Southern Equality v. Mississippi Department of Human Services, (SD MS, March 31, 2016), a Mississippi federal district court issued a preliminary injunction barring Mississippi from enforcing its statutory ban on adoption by same-sex couples. After devoting much of the opinion to issues of standing and 11th Amendment immunity, the court held that the Supreme Court's Obergefell decision requires striking down of the Mississippi adoption ban:
... [T]he majority opinion [in Obergefell] foreclosed litigation over laws interfering with the right to marry and “rights and responsibilities intertwined with marriage.”... It also seems highly unlikely that the same court that held a state cannot ban gay marriage because it would deny benefits—expressly including the right to adopt—would then conclude that married gay couples can be denied that very same benefit.
MS News Now reporting on the decision notes that Mississippi was the last state in the country to have a statutory ban on same-sex adoption.