Updated Thursday daytime
Following the initial report by Gary Gibbon on Channel 4 News that:
After meeting Labour backbenchers, the programme understands that Mr Blair won’t now be pushing for Catholic adoption agencies to be allowed an exemption from the law which will require them to place children with gay couples.
Downing St said Mr Blair would be seeking a “pragmatic solution” to the matter.
He would look to find agreement on how long they would have to wind up their operations after new gay rights regulations came into force.
The proposals, which result from last year’s Equality Act, are reported have caused a split in the Cabinet.
Mr Blair and Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly – a prominent Catholic – favouring an exemption, and colleagues including the Lord Chancellor, Lord Falconer, insisting that the rules should apply equally to everyone.
The regulations, being drafted by Ms Kelly’s Communities and Local Government department, must be approved by a vote of both Houses of Parliament before coming into effect.
other news sources have now confirmed this story:
Daily Mail Blair caves in over adoption laws
Guardian Cabinet rejects exemption on gay adoptions and this leader: Principle under pressure. And this comment by Madeleine Bunting Retreat on adoption and the Equality Act will crumble.
Stephen Bates has also written on this topic, both in the paper, The loving gay family and the archbishop next door and on Comment is free in Adopting the wrong attitude. Also, Two churches, one view and a question of conscience.
Independent Blair backs down over gay adoption law.