RaiseAChild.US Hails New Gallup Poll as a Victory for Foster Children and for LGBT Prospective Parents

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Gallup poll finds majority of Americans now support adoption by same-sex couples.

Gary J. Gates of the Williams Institute at UCLA's School of Law says growing public approval is influenced by years of decades of research showing that same-sex couples make great parents.

A majority of Americans (63%) now say same-sex couples should have the legal right to adopt.

RaiseAChild.US is celebrating the announcement of a new Gallup poll that finds a majority of Americans (63%) now say same-sex couples should have the legal right to adopt. The finding constitutes a victory for the Hollywood-based nonprofit organization that aims to solve the nation’s foster care crisis by encouraging the LGBT community to build families through fostering and adoption.

“As a gay, adoptive father of two, I have long hoped that our nation would set aside prejudice to consider the available research that proves the excellent parenting abilities of the LGBT community,” says Rich Valenza, Founder and CEO of RaiseAChild.US. “This Gallup poll finding is welcome and affirming news for our work at RaiseAChild.US."

RaiseAChild.US is also gratified to see that the support is documented across all major demographics, including political parties. Such support indicates the growing acceptance of gay families as a whole, whether formed through adoption or other methods.

More than 16,000 same-sex couples are raising an estimated 22,000 adopted children in the U.S., according to the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. A previous study by the institute in 2012 found that foster kids do equally well when adopted by gay, lesbian, or heterosexual parents. A 2013 study by the institute found that family type is not a predictor of a child’s psychological adjustment among early placed adopted children with lesbian, gay or heterosexual parents.

“Let’s put the needs of the 400,000 children in our nation’s foster care system first,” says Valenza, “and continue to evolve to realize that the composition of a family is not important. What is important to build a nation of healthy children and families is really dependent upon the capacity of parents to provide safe, loving, and permanent homes. Just like the kids across our country, good parents come in all shapes, colors, and sizes.”

Support for adoption by same-sex couples varies by age group, with people ages 18–29 being the most supportive (77%). Surprisingly, even the least supportive group, those older than 65, still indicates majority support at 51%.

“The Gallup findings showing record-high levels of support for same-sex couple adoption show that Americans understand and agree with decades of research showing that same-sex couples make great parents,” says the William Institute’s Gary J. Gates, an expert in public policy related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. “Williams Institute scholars have made substantial contributions to that research.”

RaiseAChild.US is the only national nonprofit organization that encourages the LGBT community to build families through fostering and adoption to serve the needs of the 400,000 children in the U.S. foster care system. Among the services offered by RaiseAChild.US, its unique Parent Advocate Program provides information and ongoing support via phone or email to prospective parents as they move through the process from orientation and training to matching and placement.

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Administration for Children & Families, there are 400,000 children in our nation’s foster care system. More than 104,000 of these children are available and waiting to be adopted. Families certified for either foster or adoptive placements are in short supply.

RaiseAChild.US campaigns welcome and support prospective LGBT parents while putting images of LGBT families into public spaces through PSAs, print media, and outdoor advertising. Since 2011, RaiseAChild.US has engaged more than 2,000 prospective parents nationally and become a leading organization for public education and advocacy on behalf of the 400,000 children awaiting foster and adoptive homes.

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Corinne Lightweaver

since: 10/2012
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