The number of gays and lesbians adopting children has nearly tripled in the past decade despite discriminatory rules in many states, according to an analysis of recent population trends.
About 21,740 same-sex couples had an adopted child in 2009, up from 6,477 in 2000, according to the Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law. About 32,571 adopted children were living with same-sex couples in 2009, up from 8,310 in 2000. The figures are an analysis of newly released Census Bureau estimates.
New York-based Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute released a report culminating a four-year project surveying 158 gay and lesbian parents and their experience with the adoption process. Their researchers found Massachusetts, California, New York, and Texas had the highest number of homosexuals who adopted children.
According to the Adoption Institute, at least 60 percent of U.S. adoption agencies surveyed accept applications from non-heterosexual parents. Nearly 40 percent of agencies have knowingly placed children with gay families. About half the agencies surveyed reported a desire for staff training to work with such clients.
“If one agency doesn’t serve you and you’re gay, then another agency will,” said Adam Pertman, executive director of the Adoption Institute. “You don’t need 100 percent agency participation. The bottom line is if you’re a qualified gay or lesbian in America and you want to adopt, you can.”
—Kelli Kennedy, AP