Human Rights Campaign Foundation Launches Adoption Awareness Campaign in LA County

by Admin

"Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Family," run in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and LA County Adoption Services, encourages lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families to consider adoption.

WASHINGTON - The Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization, in partnership with the California Department of Social Services, and Los Angeles County Adoption Services, has launched an innovative adoption awareness campaign targeting the LGBT community. The "Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Family" campaign is part of the HRC Foundation's "All Children - All Families" initiative, designed to find permanent families for children by promoting fairness for LGBT foster and adoptive parents. "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Family" marks the first time that the California Department of Social Services has supported effects specifically targeting the LGBT community. To learn more about the campaign, visit www.LGBTadoption.org.

"This awareness campaign helps make the dreams of thousands of children come true by raising the visibility of LGBT-adoptive families and encouraging prospective parents to learn more about the children waiting in foster care," said Ellen Kahn, Family Project Director for Human Rights Campaign Foundation. "With over 100,000 children waiting to be adopted, we need to ensure that the LGBT community knows about the opportunity to adopt and to connect them with agencies that truly welcome and support who they are as people. I thank the California Department of Social Services and Los Angeles County Adoption Services for their work in advancing this critical cause."

"California's number one priority is to find stable homes for California's children in foster care. Through this innovative partnership with the Human Rights Campaign, we are finding a way to do just that," said California Department of Social Services director John Wagner. "California is home to more than 75,000 children in foster care and gay and lesbian adults can provide loving and permanent homes for these youths."

As part of the launch, the HRC Foundation, the California Department of Social Services, and Los Angeles County Adoption Services unveiled a billboard advertising the campaign in West Hollywood. The billboard ad will be displayed for 24 weeks. An advertising campaign for "Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Family" will also be launched in Alameda County.

Of the children in the U.S. foster care system, more than 120,000 are awaiting adoption by loving, permanent families. Agencies may purposefully or inadvertently close the door to qualified families through their practices. Few agencies recruit LGBT adoptive & foster parents, and many LGBT people feel unwelcome or discouraged. Similarly, members of the LGBT community may not be aware of the opportunities in domestic adoption and foster care, or they may not know of agencies that welcome their families. HRC is working with a coalition of partners to break down the barriers that stand between thousands of loving, qualified LGBT adoptive parents and the thousands of children who are waiting for a family.

The "All Children - All Families" initiative, launched in 2007 by the HRC Family Project, works to ensure that all qualified prospective parents who wish to open their homes and hearts to children and youth have the opportunity to do so, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The program seeks to enhance LGBT competence among child welfare professionals and educate LGBT people about opportunities to become foster or adoptive parents to waiting children. Thirty-four agencies from across the U.S are currently participating, and more than a dozen agencies are close to earning the seal of recognition. More information about the initiative can be found at www.hrc.org/acaf.

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.

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