New York, June 13, 2012 — A coalition that includes lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) and allied organizations today published An Ally’s Guide to Talking About Adoption by LGBT Parents, a guide to building effective discussions on parenting and adoption, including a first-of-its-kind set of recommendations for conversations about second-parent adoption.
The new resource—developed by the Movement Advancement Project (MAP), the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Family Equality Council, the Human Rights Campaign, and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research—is available online as part of the Talking About LGBT Issues Series.
An Ally’s Guide to Talking About Adoption by LGBT Parents offers tools to have effective conversations across three areas: parenting and adoption in general, second-parent adoption, and joint adoption. It also provides a reminder of what social science tells us about outcomes for children raised by lesbian and gay parents, as well as a reminder that all mainstream child health and social services organizations support adoption by qualified lesbian and gay parents.
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner conducted research to better understand public attitudes toward second-parent adoption—where one partner in an unmarried couple adopts the other partner's child, something that can occur in both straight and gay relationships.
“Americans overwhelmingly support second-parent adoption because they recognize that every child should have the security of knowing that their ties to their parents are safe and secure,” said Lorraine Kenny, Senior Program Strategist at the ACLU. “If a parent wants to share legal responsibility for their own children with their partner, the law shouldn’t prevent them from doing what is best for their family.”
Greenberg found that 80 percent of U.S. adults support second-parent adoption. That support is rooted in two key areas: recognizing that the best interests of children are served by ensuring that they have strong legal ties to both the parents who are raising them; and ensuring that the law does not prevent a parent from deciding to share legal responsibility for their own child, if doing so is in the child’s best interest.
“Adoption and parenting are about creating loving, stable homes for kids, and good parenting is good parenting, no matter whether the parents are gay or straight,” said Ineke Mushovic, executive director of MAP. “We hope this guide provides allies of LGBT families with a clear, concise roadmap for conversations that will help them build and strengthen support for the security that comes with adoption and parenting by loving, caring LGBT parents.”
Information about a federal lawsuit the ACLU filed seeking second parent adoptions in North Carolina can be found at www.aclu.org/second-parent-adoption-NC.
For additional resources on LGBT families, visit www.lgbtmap.org/lgbt-families.
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About the Authors
MAP's mission is to provide independent and rigorous research, insight and communications that help speed equality and opportunity for all. MAP works to ensure that all people have a fair chance to pursue health and happiness, earn a living, take care of the ones they love, be safe in their communities, and participate in civic life.
The ACLU is our nation’s guardian of liberty, working daily in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country. www.aclu.org
Celebrating its 30th Anniversary, Family Equality Council connects, supports, and represents the one million lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents in this country and the two million children they are raising. www.familyequality.org
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all. www.hrc.org
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research has provided strategic opinion research for NGOs, issue organizations, public leaders, and corporations for 30 years. Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research has done extensive work on LGBT issues, working for clients such as the ACLU, Human Rights Campaign, Center for American Progress and a variety of state organizations and ballot fights around the country.