HC Deb 03 November 1997 vol 300 cc74-5W
Dr. Starkey

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans the Government have for legislative recognition of the claim of lesbian and gay co-parents to be equivalent to those of step-parents. [14362]

Mr. Boateng

Section 14 of the Adoption Act 1976 only permits a joint adoption application to be made by a man and woman married to each other; co-habiting couples are therefore excluded from making a joint application but an application may be made by one of them. Decisions about the child's placement for adoption will always be determined by the welfare and needs of the child. The Government have no plans to amend the relevant sections of the Act.