Providenciales, 23 Apr 2015 – A package of family law bills under debate in the House of Assembly and during contribution to the Adoption Bill 2015, the Minister for Border Control & Labour, Hon Donhue Gardiner took the stand that according to the TCI Constitution it is wrong to prevent anyone in the Turks and Caicos from forming a family – this includes legal or non-legal residents; citizens or work permit holders. There were lots of questions when this particular bill hit the floor of the House; the Attorney General fielding queries to clarify what was right and not right under the law. Among the determinations within the proposed ordinance is that while work permit holders or any resident of the country – who is deemed suitable – can adopt a Turks and Caicos Islands child; that child would be able to continue to enjoy TCI citizenship under this country’s laws but may be forced to a decision by other nations which do not permit dual citizenship.
It was also suggested by Attorney General, Rhonda Lee Knowles that the ordinance offer general guidelines to ensure the child is protected in these adoption matters and allow for the courts to make rulings on more intimate details on a case by case basis. Minister Gardiner also reminded that under British National law, to which the Turks and Caicos is subject… any child adopted by an overseas territories citizen has a right to a British Overseas Territories Citizens passport. The other family laws at the HOA this week are the Children Care and Protection Bill 2015; the Family Law Guardianship, Custody and Access to Children Bill 2015 and the Domestic Violence Bill 2015.