Some days are more significant than others in our world of adoption. Friday, June 26, 2015, was one of those days. For twenty five years I have represented same sex couples in the endeavor to build their families. Until that recent Friday in June, children born or adopted into these families were especially vulnerable. For centuries, these parents suffered the stress and indignity of being unable to marry. For centuries, every state and the federal government treated this sub class of children as second class citizens who could not enjoy the financial benefits and stability of having married parents. For centuries, this group of children could not have both of their parents appear on their birth certificate. And even if both parents ARE listed on their birth certificate, would another state fully recognize the legal relationship in the event of a medical emergency?
Then ever so slowly the tide began to turn. First Massachusetts, then other states analyzed same sex marriage through the lens of the children of those relationships. Still, with no definitive federal law children were in peril. Parents continued to restrict their travel for fear their rights as parents would not be recognized in the eyes of the law.
We celebrate the U.S. Supreme Court decision with our clients and allies who worked at the grassroots level to make this happen. You are to be congratulated.
Denise M. Bierly, Esquire