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Equality in Adoption

You Have Options,,,

Over the last decade there has been a significant rise in the number of LGBTQ individuals and couples building their own families through adoption, foster care, donor insemination and surrogacy. There has also been history of judgment against same-sex and gender nonconforming people becoming parents. Although we’ve come a long way in supporting gay and lesbian couples in starting families, significant prejudice still exists against transgender people. As result transgender individuals are often hesitant to access services for fear of judgment and rejection.

All individuals, regardless of sex, gender identity or sexual orientation and who desire to be parents, are entitled to have the opportunity and information necessary to explore different avenues to create the family they’ve dreamed of. Family building can be challenging on many levels and adoption processes -- although exciting – can also be lengthy and may be intimidating as outsiders thoroughly investigate people before approving them as potential parents. For trans people, it can be especially daunting. Wanting to be a parent and needing the assistance of an adoption agency is naturally overwhelming therefore finding an agency that is progressive and sensitive to the unique needs of LGBTQ people is essential. 
Knowing these realities, Friends in Adoption (FIA), a non-profit, licensed adoption agency, sought the expertise of Choices Counseling & Consulting (CCC) for education in training professionals who work with prospective families. FIA supports those interested in adopting and also with pregnant women/couples considering placing their baby with an adoptive family. Choices and the Institute for Gender, Relationships, Identity, and Sexuality (TIGRIS) provided formal workshops to enhance the cultural competency of FIA in regard to working with LGBTQ adoptive parents. Through the evaluation of policies and procedures, Choices assisted FIA with developing best practices guidelines to be utilized in homestudy evaluations. Implementation of 
these changes has provided FIA with valuable tools necessary to best serve the LGBTQ community. Although FIA has been leader in serving gay and lesbian couples for the past two decades, they are now also committed to working with the trans community. Completion of this training with CCC and TIGRIS will provide FIA the All Children - All Families Agency Seal of Recognition, a national initiative established by the Human Rights Campaign.

What’s particularly exciting about the collaboration of CCC and FIA is the joint focus on celebrating diversity and commitment to equality in adoption. These agencies will continue to work together to encourage and support LGBTQ individuals and couples considering adoption. Choices Counseling and Consulting has worked with the LGBTQ community for 25 years and part of that work has always been supportive of LGBTQ people looking to establish and raise families through adoption. Knowing the stress and anxiety that can exist for LGBTQ individuals interested in being parents, Choices offers clinical and consulting services both pre and postplacement. Choices will continue to provide professional home studies to the Capital Region and now link individuals and families directly with adoption possibilities through FIA.

Choices Counseling & Consulting and Friends in Adoption openly welcome diversity, understanding that loving parents come from all walks of life. Whether you’re curious about, considering, or committed to adoption as your path towards family-building, Choices and FIA are dedicated to providing all adoptive parents with acceptance and compassionate guidance--
Helpful Links:
Friends in Adoption
For further information please contact:
Choices Counseling & Consulting
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