November is National Adoption Month, a time to raise awareness about adoption through foster care in the U.S. These times continue to be hard on all of us, and it’s especially challenging for youth in foster care who are awaiting adoption. That’s why it’s important we take action right from our homes to highlight why adoption is an LGBTQ+ issue, the information you should know about adoption, and how you can help.
1. Share this information and educate your friends and family about adoption.
There are over 122,000 youth in foster care in the U.S. awaiting adoption, and more than 23,000 of them will likely age out without finding a permanent home. Unfortunately we know that without the supportive foundation a family can provide, these young people are more likely to experience poverty and homelessness.
2. LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in foster care.
A recent study of foster youth in New York City found that more than one third of youth in foster care are LGBTQ+. Research consistently shows LGBTQ+ youth are overrepresented, and they are more likely to report being treated poorly while in care.
3. Same-sex couples are more likely to raise adopted children than different-sex couples.
According to recent research from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and Clark University, 3.8 million LGBTQ+ millennials are considering expanding their families in the coming years. Additionally, 84% of LGBTQ+ adults surveyed would consider adoption or foster care in the future.
4. HRC certifies LGBTQ+ inclusive agencies.
Adoption agencies across the country are working with HRC’s All Children - All Families program to implement LGBTQ+ inclusive policies and practices. Visit this map of participating agencies to see if any serve your local area.
5. You can help support LGBTQ+ youth and parents this month and all year long.
According to The Trevor Project, one caring adult can reduce suicide risk for an LGBTQ+ young person by 40%. That means there is something each and every one of us can do to support LGBTQ+ youth! Today, we encourage you to commit toensuring every young person has at least one caring adult in their life.