Frank Martin Gill, the plaintiff in a
court challenge to Florida's gay adoption ban, has urged Governor
Charlie Crist to not appeal Wednesday's
ruling declaring the ban unconstitutional.
The 3-judge appeals court unanimously
upheld a lower court's ruling that found the law to be
unconstitutional and to have “no rational basis.”
The decision means Gill can legally
adopt the two half brothers he and his partner have raised since
“I understand that the governor would
like to hear my views in considering whether to appeal the decision
of the Third District Court of Appeals striking down the ban on
adoption by lesbians and gay men,” Gill said in a statement.
“After considerable thought and consultation with my attorneys at
the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), it is my hope that the
state will not appeal and the case will stop here.”
“I understand that if the state does
not appeal this decision, it will apply to all Floridians and put an
end to this baseless law that has harmed my kids and so many other
children and families.”
“I am eager to adopt my two children
and to remove this barrier to adoption for other children as soon as
possible. Ending the case now would be the quickest way for that to
happen,” he added.
Crist previously supported the state's
defense of the law, but the
Republican-turned-independent now campaigning for the U.S. Senate had
a recent change of heart and now says he objects to the law.
Florida enacted the ban 17 years ago.
It is the only state with an outright ban. Other states have enacted
laws that limit gay couples' access to adoption. Such as Arkansas,
which denies unmarried couples – in a state that bans gay marriage
– the right to jointly adopt children.
Attorneys for the ACLU backed Gill in
urging the governor to not appeal the case to the Florida Supreme