Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Christian couple forced to quit fostering after refusing to tell kids its 'good to be gay'

As devoted foster parents, Vincent and Pauline Matherick have provided a stable family home for almost 30 vulnerable children.

But the couple's latest foster son is being taken away from them by social workers because they have refused to promote homosexuality.

They say that to do so would go against their Christian faith.

The 11-year-old boy, who has been in their care for two years, will be placed in a council hostel this week and the Mathericks will be given no more children to look after.

The devastated couple, who have three grown up children of their own, first became foster parents in 2001 and have since cared for 28 children at their home in Chard, Somerset.

Earlier this year, Somerset County Council's social services department asked them to sign a contract to implement Labour's new Sexual Orientation Regulations, part of the Equality Act 2006, which make discrimination on the grounds of sexuality illegal.

Officials told the couple they would be required to discuss same-sex relationships with children as young as 11 and tell them that gay partnerships were just as acceptable as heterosexual marriages.

They could also be required to take teenagers to gay association meetings.

When the Mathericks objected, they were told they would be taken off the register of foster parents if they refused to comply with the new rules.

The Mathericks have decided to resign rather than face the humiliation of being expelled. Read more
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