Gay London couple repeatedly denied adoption

Children|October 24th 2015

A gay couple in London have given up their quest to adopt a child after being repeatedly rejected by Tower Hamlets Council.

Matthew Broadway-Horner and Pradeep De Silva were approved as potential adoptive parents by the council in September 2014. But they were given a succession of reasons why they could not adopt specific children.

Most recently, social services told them that their three bedroom house was not big enough and had previously rejected the couple because they did not have toys in the house. Speaking to the Metro, Mr Broadway-Horner said people might think it was “slightly weird” for a couple to have toys in the house before they had any children.

They had been willing to adopt a child of any ethnicity because “we knew lots of people wanted a white child”. Despite this, and the fact that they are an interracial couple who were willing to learn about the background of any child they adopted, they were criticised by social services for their lack of knowledge of Romanian and Nigerian culture.

Mr Broadway-Horner said that before they began the process, they thought it would be “finely tuned to ensure that the adopter is having a good experience from beginning to end of the journey”, but they soon discovered that “this [was] not the case”.

He said that they had been asked which of the two would assume the role of the mother and if they had any women in their family. The questions gave them the impression that social services thought the fact they were a same sex couple “was somehow psychologically damaging”.

After several failed attempts to get a child, the couple withdrew from the process. In response, Tower Hamlets Council released a statement which read that it was “unfortunate that [the couple] have decided on this course of action and we will retain an open door should they change their mind”.

Photo of Tower Hamlets by Jodie C via Flickr

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