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News – Victory for adoption worker

September 2009

Victory for adoption worker

 

A children’s doctor struck off an adoption panel for her beliefs has been reinstated as the panel’s medical adviser, following a wave of support.

     Dr Sheila Matthews, who had been working as a community paediatrician in Northamptonshire for more than 18 years, was dismissed by the county council earlier this year. This was the council’s response to her request that she be allowed to abstain from voting, when she might have to recommend placing a child with a homosexual couple.

     Despite Dr Matthews attempting this compromise with the council, its then head of services for children, young people and families, dismissed her for her belief that ‘children do best with a mother and father in a committed, long-term relationship’.

     However, a concerted media campaign, public support and the legal advice and backing of the Christian Legal Centre, effected a change of mind in the council. It has now allowed Dr Matthews back as a medical adviser, although not as a voting member of the adoption panel.

     Dr Matthews said: ‘I cannot recommend a same-sex household to be in the best interest of a child, despite what politicians may have legislated for. As those on the panel have an obligation to do what is best for the child, then I am not able to vote in favour of such placements’.

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