Social workers accused of ‘negligence’ for placing child with gay couple

A happy family with gay parents

Russian social workers are being investigated for “negligence” after allowing a gay couple to adopt two children.

According to a statement from the investigative committee of Russia, social services in Moscow have had a criminal case opened against them because the parents promote “unconventional relations, forming distorted ideas about family values ​​in children, harming their health, moral and spiritual development.”

The statement continued: “According to the investigation, the employees of the social protection department, reliably aware of the current situation in the family of adopted children, did not take appropriate measures to protect minors from information harmful to their health and development.”

Although currently investigating the social workers, Russian authorities may also be able to prosecute the parents under the country’s “gay propaganda law.”

Members of the Russian gay community

Members of the Russian gay community and gay rights activists from Europe hold flags during a banned gay rally in Moscow on May 29, 2008. (ANDREY SMIRNOV/AFP/Getty)

LGBT+ rights lawyer said the children feel “comfortable and safe,” and that there were no “indications of violence in the family”

According to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW), LGBT+ rights group Vykhod is advising the couple, who have left Russia for a holiday and are not speaking to the media.

Lawyer Maksim Olenichev from Vykhod told DW of the “gay propaganda law”: “So far, the law has been enforced so that LGBT people don’t carry out public events.”

But, he said, it is so broad that officials are able to enforce it any way they choose and if they decide to enforce it in this case, it”could become the first time that this law is applied to someone’s private life.”

Olenichev said that the children were now 12 and 14 years old. He told DW that they feel “comfortable and safe,” and that there were no “indications of violence in the family.”

According to The Moscow Times, the unidentified officials that allowed the couple to adopt could face up to three months in prison.