American Bar Association Resolves that Parental Rights Decisions Should Center on the Well-being of the Child, and Not the Disability of a Parent

On February 6, 2017, the American Bar Association passed a resolution asking governments to enact legislation and implement public policy that does not deny or restrict custody, visitation and access based on a parent’s disability, and that a prospective parent's disability not be used as a bar to adoption or foster care.

In their report to the ABA House of Delegates, the Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice, Section of Family Law, Commission on Disability Rights, and Commission on Youth at Risk explained that the resolution looks to reinforce the right of people with disabilities and their children to live free from discriminatory state actions that can result in separations of parents and their children, and to ensure that decision-making is driven by the best interests of the child and not disability biases. The resolution would also extend to people living with HIV.