A publicly-funded group which published an attack on critics of gay adoption, calling them “retarded homophobes”, has said sorry for its language but ‘stands by’ the sentiment.
The British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF), says it regrets using the word “retarded” because of the offence it could cause people with learning disabilities.
The strongly-worded slur was published in BAAF’s new guide to gay adoption. It advised same-sex couples, “most importantly, don’t worry about society.
“Children need good parents much more than retarded homophobes need an excuse to whinge, so don’t let your worries about society’s reaction hinder your desire and ability to give a child a loving caring home.”
BAAF says it says it will pulp the 100 copies of the book which are already printed and will alter the text in future copies.
A spokesperson said yesterday: “The use of the word ‘retarded’ is not appropriate and it is regrettable that we put that up there.
“It has now been removed from our website, but we do still stand by the sentiments behind it.
“It is strong language but they are not our words, they are the words of the carer. It just reflects the strength of their feeling against the homophobia in society. This is how same-sex couples feel.”
Later, BAAF issued a statement which said: “We deeply regret the use of the word “retarded” and apologise for any offence that it has caused. The use of this word is unacceptable in any circumstances.
“The fact that this was part of the quote that went to print was down to a human error for which we apologise. We are correcting the error.”
Ismail Kaji, a Mencap spokesperson, said: “As someone with a learning disability, I find the word retard highly offensive. It is unacceptable and a disgrace that a state-funded agency is using such outdated, discriminatory language.
“There would quite rightly be outrage if a racist word were used in a government pamphlet – so why is abhorrent disablist language so often overlooked?”
BAAF has so far failed to offer an apology to critics of gay adoption.
The Daily Telegraph’s Andrew Pierce, who is openly gay, wrote yesterday: “As a gay man, I have never had any interest in adopting children. But I support those who want to, and would never denigrate those who think it is in the best interests of the child to be with a man and woman.
“Do you know, considering this latest PC tirade from BAAF, I’m relieved that it was a Catholic children’s society – also condemned by the association, for being unwilling to deal with gay couples – that handled my adoption when I was a two-year-old.”