Campaign encourages gay adoption
In a controversial move, local agencies are reaching out to members of the gay community, launching a new campaign to encourage them to adopt children.
Proponents of the statewide campaign say there are thousands of kids who need loving homes. Opponents say it is an attack on traditional family values. However, both sides say they are concerned for children.
Several agencies launched a campaign called "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Family" on Tuesday to persuade members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to adopt children.
"They provide loving, stable and permanent homes for kids who need them," said Robyn Harrod, Southern California Adoption Agency. "And, it makes absolutely no difference whether they are gay, straight, single, married ... They just need to love kids and want to provide a home for them."
Opponents, such as Brotherhood Organization of a New Destiny, or BOND, say this is an attack on traditional family values and a waste of public money.
"Studies have indicated that kids raised in homosexual households, especially girls, tend to act out sexually, tend to be very promiscuous ... and these kids are very confused about their identity," said Ermias Alemayehu, BOND. "And we don't think the state or the county should be in the business of promoting that kind of lifestyle."
Only four states, including California, permit same-sex couple adoption. Officials say this is a chance for many children to get out of foster care and into a family that wants them.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 129,000 children await adoption from foster care. Officials say for those who don't get adopted, the future is often grim.
"The research shows that a good deal of these kids who emancipate from the system wind up homeless, wind up incarcerated, wind up jobless and they have no family," said Harrod.
"This is another way to normalize the homosexual agenda. And the next thing will be to go after overturning Prop 8,"said Alemayehu.
According to a UCLA study, about 65,000 U.S. children now live with gay adoptive parents.
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