Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A New Report Details the Costs of Discrimination

In March The Williams Institute, a think tank that examines sexual orientation and public policy, released a new study that details the costs of denying gay, lesbian, and bisexual parents the right to adopt and provide foster care.

Here are some of the most noteworthy conclusions:
  • Currently in Texas, there are over 3,500 adopted children in LGB families. Texas ranks fourth in the nation for LGB adoptions.
  • If the Texas Legislature banned GLB foster care, considering the costs of new foster parent recruitment /training and the additional costs of institutional and congregate care facilities, Texas would have to spend an estimated $2,500,00 dollars a year to make up for these valuable, lost LGB parents.
  • In the United Sates, an estimated 14,100 foster children are living with LGB parents. These children make up approximately three percent of all foster children in the U.S.
  • A national ban on GLB foster care would cost the government from $87 to $130 billion dollars each year.
  • Nationally, an estimated 2 million LGB people are interested in adopting. Over 50 percent of gay men and 41 percent of lesbians want to have a child.
  • Same-sex couples raising adopted children are older, more educated, and have more economic resources than other adoptive parents.
The complete report is fascinating. Its presentation is admirably objective, and its methodology appears very sound. This type of study is so important, as it helps us destroy stereotypes of LGB. In addition to all the new numbers this report has produced, I was surprised to learn that a number of other influential professional organizations and institutions, including the American Medical Association, The American Psychological Association, and the National Association of Social Workers, have made public findings that encourage GLB adoption and foster care.

Check out the William's Institute.

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