Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed a bill on Wednesday that would allow adoption agencies in the state to turn away gay couples who want to adopt a child. The law purports to support religious freedom by not forcing faith-based organizations to potentially close down or face penalties as a result of acting in accordance with religious beliefs. Like many religious freedom bills that have been passed in various states, House Bill 24‘s language frames the issue as preventing discrimination against religious people or institutions.
“This bill would prohibit the state from discriminating against child placing agencies on the basis that the provider declines to provide a child placement that conflicts with the religious beliefs of the provider,” the text of the bill says.
“The bill is not to discriminate against anyone,” Rep. Rich Wingo, who sponsored the bill, said to AL.com. “Nowhere in the bill does it say anything like that or lead you to believe that.” (Read more from “Bill Allowing Adopting Agencies to Refuse Gay Couples Becomes Law” HERE)