December 10, 2015 at 8:18 am EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Puerto Rico court issues historic adoption ruling

Puerto Rico, gay news, Washington Blade

A Puerto Rico judge on Dec. 9, 2015, ruled a lesbian could adopt the child that her partner had through artificial insemination. (Image by Raimond Spekking)

A Puerto Rico court on Wednesday ruled for the first time that a same-sex couple can legally adopt a child in the U.S. commonwealth.

The Associated Press reported the judge issued the ruling in the case of a woman who had been trying to adopt a girl that her partner had through artificial insemination.

The woman had been trying to adopt the girl for two years.

“This case illustrates the determination and the will of this girl’s mothers,” said Puerto Rico Justice Secretary César Miranda in a statement. “It is a recognition of the entire human rights struggle waged in Puerto Rico.”

“Today I celebrate the fact that Puerto Rico can be more habitable, more solidary and more forward in the reclamation of rights,” he added. “My most sincere congratulations and best wishes for both mothers and for their child.”

Pedro Julio Serrano, founder of Puerto Rico Para Tod@s, a Puerto Rican LGBT advocacy group, also applauded the ruling.

“It is a great day for thousands of LGBTT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and transsexual) partners who hope to adopt,” he told the Washington Blade. “It is a great day for Puerto Rico because it is more just and equal.”

The U.S. Supreme Court in June 2014 ruled in the Obergefell case that gays and lesbians have the constitutional right to marry throughout the country. Same-sex couples began to legally tie the knot in Puerto Rico a few weeks later.

Serrano noted to the Blade that Puerto Rican lawmakers have yet to extend adoption rights to same-sex couples through legislation.

“Let us not forget that there is still much to do in order to achieve full equality,” he said. “But today we celebrate with this family and we congratulate them and we are happy for a victory after many years of struggle and for opening paths of hope for many families. Love triumphed.”

Hector Maldonado, Puerto Rico, San Juan, gay news, Washington Blade

Bayamon, Puerto Rico, resident Hector Maldonado stands outside the island’s capital on May 16, 2013, before the Puerto Rico Senate approved a non-discrimination bill . (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

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