An Evangelical Christian couple from Edmonton, Canada, is accusing the province of Alberta of discrimination for denying them the right to adopt a child because of their views on homosexuality.
The couple, identified only by the initials "C.D." and "N.D." according to court documents, have filed a civil suit against the province alleging religious discrimination, LifeSite reports. The Justice Centre has filed a court application for a judicial review of the government's decision, CBC reported.
The couple filed their application for adoption last year and met the requirements for adoptive parents. The couple, described as employed, owning their own home, and having happy and healthy networks, were initially "recommended" for adoption by a Catholic Social Services worker, the Edmonton Journal reported.
In the recommendation report, however, it was noted that the couple not be given a homosexual child because although they were found to be capable of giving unconditional love to a child, an assessment reportedly concluded that they would not be supportive of the homosexual "lifestyle."
In mid-March of this year, the same worker contacted the couple and had more questions regarding their views on sexuality.
The couple, during subsequent meetings with the Catholic Social Services and Child and Family Services, said they seek help if the child they adopted were to have questions about their sexuality.
However, they reportedly also made it clear that they could not support a lifestyle that, according to affidavit filed with Court of Queen's Bench in Edmonton, would cause more anxiety, depression, and suicide attempts compared to other lifestyles.
Their application was rejected, according to the affidavit, because they were allegedly told that their "religious beliefs regarding sexuality were incompatible with the adoption process."
The woman who applied for adoption claimed in the affidavit that unless they change their religious beliefs, they will "not be approved for adoption.'
The rejection of the adoption application was reportedly supported by the Ministry of Children's Services.
"Our government believes that every adoptive child deserves a safe, healthy, loving and inclusive home," said Aaron Manton, press secretary for Children's Services Minister Danielle Larivee.
Calgary lawyer and president of Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms John Carpay, however, does not agree with the decision.
Choosing who may or may not be allowed to adopt children based on their individual religious beliefs "violates this couple's right to religious freedom and equality under the law," Carpay said.
Carpay said he expects a hearing date in 2018.