MIAMI — With the blessing of her large extended family, Vanessa Alenier took custody of an infant relative who had been seized by child welfare workers.
When she asked the state for permission to adopt him, the application included a simple question: Are you gay?
Alenier, 34, said she did not want to begin her journey as a parent with a lie. So she told the truth, despite Florida's 33-year-old law banning gay men and lesbians from adopting.
This month — as a Miami appeals court determines the constitutionality of the embattled adoption ban — a judge quietly approved the 1-year-old's adoption. The decision by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Maria Sampedro-Iglesia is the third finalized adoption by a gay couple within the past year.
Florida Department of Children and Families administrators, who objected to the adoption, have not yet decided whether they will appeal.