Adoption case judge tells couple challenge same sex marriage ban - FOX 32 News Chicago

Adoption case judge tells Michigan couple challenge same sex marriage ban

Posted: Updated:
Jayne Rowse and April DeBoer outside of federal court  (Credit: MyFox Detroit) Jayne Rowse and April DeBoer outside of federal court (Credit: MyFox Detroit)

By AMY LANGE
MyFox Detroit Reporter

DETROIT (MyFox Detroit)
-- A same sex couple from Hazel Park filed suit against the governor and state attorney general because they can't jointly adopt.  Wednesday, a federal judge suggested they instead challenge the state's definition of marriage.

"I just want my kids to have the same rights as everybody else's family.  They deserve those rights," said April DeBoer.

DeBoer and her partner, Jayne Rowse, have been fighting for their kids all their lives.  They are both nurses who fostered and adopted three special needs children, who are now thriving.

DeBoer and Rowse were certified by the state as a couple to foster the children, but the state only allowed them to adopt them as individuals.  They want the right to jointly adopt.  They want their children to have two legal parents.

"The kids deserve protection that every other child deserves," said Rowse.

So the women are suing the governor and the state attorney general because of Michigan's restriction on joint adoptions by people who are not allowed to marry.  However, attorneys with the state called the efforts by the plaintiffs an end run around the state law.

In the end, that's exactly what federal Judge Bernard Friedman suggested they do, challenge the state's definition of marriage.  That's really the underlying issue, he told them.  It would be the first challenge to Michigan's law banning same sex marriage, and this couple might be the one to take it on.

"We're going to look at all of our options, talk this over and really do the rational thing that we decide is right for everyone," Rowse said.

"It makes it a broader issue with a much broader class of people being affected," said attorney Carole Stanyar.

"It would resolve this matter altogether if the ban on same sex marriage in Michigan was found to be unconstitutional," said attorney Dana Nessel.

"You're talking about bringing my children into even more than they've already been through, and I'm not sure we're ready to do that," said DeBoer.

Judge Friedman has given them ten days to amend their complaint.  That's just a short time for them to decide whether or not they're going to take on the ban on same sex marriage in Michigan.

  • Amy LangeMore from Amy LangeMore>>

  • Three arrested after military reservist killed during carjacking

    Three arrested after military reservist killed during carjacking

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 7:01 PM EDT2014-07-29 23:01:39 GMT
    A third suspect is under arrest in the carjacking and murder of a young man outside the Superland Market at Schoolcraft Road and Rutland Street Monday night.
    A third suspect is under arrest in the carjacking and murder of a young man outside the Superland Market at Schoolcraft Road and Rutland Street Monday night.
  • Fire from lightning strike devastates Roseville church

    Fire from lightning strike devastates Roseville church

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 12:10 PM EDT2014-07-29 16:10:35 GMT
    A raging fire happens in Roseville and of all places to be struck by lightning - the steeple of the New Life Church of God in Christ.Pastor Darrell Moore and his family are devastated."I got here and I found out I really didn't have a church anymore, " he said. Moore was attending a Sunday evening service at another church, when a member of new life called him repeatedly. When he finally answered, it was bad news."The fire department was here, there was water everywhere," said Mary Moore, mot...
    A raging fire happens in Roseville and of all places to be struck by lightning - the steeple of the New Life Church of God in Christ.Pastor Darrell Moore and his family are devastated."I got here and I found out I really didn't have a church anymore, " he said. Moore was attending a Sunday evening service at another church, when a member of new life called him repeatedly. When he finally answered, it was bad news."The fire department was here, there was water everywhere," said Mary Moore, mot...
  • Charges to be determined after teen dies in car crash

    Charges to be determined after teen dies in car crash

    Monday, July 28 2014 7:59 PM EDT2014-07-28 23:59:07 GMT
    Seven teenagers were on their way back from a bonfire late Friday night. A 16-year-old girl was behind the wheel of the Ford Expedition with her mom also in the car.
    Seven teenagers were on their way back from a bonfire late Friday night. A 16-year-old girl was behind the wheel of the Ford Expedition with her mom also in the car.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Three arrested after military reservist killed during carjacking

    Three arrested after military reservist killed during carjacking

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 7:01 PM EDT2014-07-29 23:01:39 GMT
    A third suspect is under arrest in the carjacking and murder of a young man outside the Superland Market at Schoolcraft Road and Rutland Street Monday night.
    A third suspect is under arrest in the carjacking and murder of a young man outside the Superland Market at Schoolcraft Road and Rutland Street Monday night.
  • Duggan bringing big changes to Detroit water department, starting with shutoffs

    Duggan bringing big changes to Detroit water department, starting with shutoffs

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:56 PM EDT2014-07-29 21:56:25 GMT
    Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan is promising big changes at the water department, starting with the controversial shutoffs."Certainly it has hurt the reputation of the city," Duggan said. "I have been anxious to do something about it for awhile and I am just glad I have a chance to do it,"Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr handed over the water department to the mayor and City Council TuesdayDuggan says better publicizing assitance programs is the biggest priority."I still don't think the people in need h...
    Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan is promising big changes at the water department, starting with the controversial shutoffs."Certainly it has hurt the reputation of the city," Duggan said. "I have been anxious to do something about it for awhile and I am just glad I have a chance to do it,"Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr handed over the water department to the mayor and City Council TuesdayDuggan says better publicizing assitance programs is the biggest priority."I still don't think the people in need h...
  • Royal Oak fire crew forced to watch house burn waiting for DTE

    Royal Oak fire crew forced to watch house burn waiting for DTE

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:47 PM EDT2014-07-29 21:47:18 GMT
    Roberta Erxleben has lived in her house for 30 years and says her garage would not have been destroyed Sunday had DTE responded to another electric fire sooner.
    Roberta Erxleben has lived in her house for 30 years and says her garage would not have been destroyed Sunday had DTE responded to another electric fire sooner.
Powered by WorldNow

205 N. Michigan Avenue
Ground Floor
Chicago, IL 60601
Station Operator: (312) 565-5532
Newsroom: (312)565-5533

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices