Written by Don Byrd

This week the House Appropriations Committee passed an amendment to a a funding measure that would allow adoption service providers to refuse services that conflict with their “sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions.” By a vote of 29-23, the committee added the provision to the Labor, HHS, and Education funding bill. 

CNN quotes a statement from bill sponsor Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-AL) in its report:

“The amendment I introduced seeks to prevent these (state) governments from discriminating against child welfare providers on the basis that the provider declines to provide a service that conflicts with its sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions,” [Adderholt] said in a statement.

The amendment could have consequences for LGBTQ-friendly states. It would require the US Department of Health and Human Services to withhold 15% of the federal funds for child welfare services from states and localities don’t meet the same standards for protecting religious adoption groups.

Several states have considered or passed similar legislation recently in an effort to shield agencies who are required to provide services without discrimination.