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Ohio Anti-Gay Amendment Does Not Invalidate Parental Rights Court Told


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Ohio Anti-Gay Amendment Does Not Invalidate Parental Rights Court Told

by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff

Posted: November 17, 2005 5:00 pm ET

(Franklin County, Ohio) Lawyers for an Ohio woman battling her former partner for joint custody rights to their child have told a judge that the ex-partner is wrong in alleging that the state's amendment banning gay marriage invalidates the right to co-parent.

Therese Fairchild is suing to have former partner Denise Fairchild ordered to abide by a court-approved joint custody agreement entered into in 2001.

Denise Fairchild had the boy by artificial insemination.

At her request, the Franklin County Domestic Relations Court gave Therese Fairchild parenting rights in 2001, saying the women "shall be treated in the law as two equal parents of their minor child."

When the couple broke up Denise Fairchild refused to allow Therese Fairchild visitation rights and Therese went to court.

Lawyers for Denise Fairchild argue that the same-sex marriage ban extends to children.

In addition to banning same-sex marriage the amendment says the state "and its political subdivisions shall not create or recognize a legal status for relationships of unmarried individuals that intends to approximate the design, qualities, significance or effect of marriage."

Fairchild is represented by Lambda Legal.

It says that that the issue in the case is parenting and not marriage.

"Both women agreed to share custody to protect their son against just this kind of separation," said Camilla Taylor, Staff Attorney in Lambda Legal's Midwest Regional Office in Chicago.

"The constitutional amendment in question pertains to relationships between two adults --- not the relationship between a parent and her child."

Lambda asks the court to uphold the 2001 agreement and order Denise Fairchild to allow Therese visitation rights.

©365Gay.com 2005


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