Court Hears Lesbian's Challenge
Lawyers for a lesbian seeking to become a foster parent tell a judge there's no rational basis for Missouri's policy against such arrangements. But a spokeswoman for the State Department of Social Services says the agency continues to believe in its policy against licensing openly gay people as foster parents. Jackson County Circuit Judge Sandra Midkiff heard arguments yesterday in the case of Lisa Johnston and said she will rule within a month. Johnston applied to become a foster parent two years ago, hoping to raise a child with her female partner. She went to court after the state denied her application in March. Attorney Brett Shirk says the Social Services Department considered Johnston and her partner highly qualified, rejecting Johnston only because she's gay. Shirk told the judge the state cannot legally discriminate based on gender or sexual preference.