Even with all the legal hurdles that are involved with same-sex couples seeking adoption, there is still a growing number of gay couples across the United States who are choosing to adopt. The New York Times reports that census data shows that in 2009, about 19 percent of same-sex couples were raising children that they had adopted. This is significantly more than the reported eight percent of same-sex couples raising children in 2000.
Why the increase in same-sex couple adoption? It's possible that the trend has to do with the increasing number of children who are currently waiting for adoption, or perhaps it is because there has been an increased acceptance of gays and lesbians in American society over the past decade.
The reason for more gay adoptions is certainly not because new laws have made it easier for same-sex couples to adopt. Currently, Utah and Mississippi are the only two U.S. states to explicitly prohibit same-sex couples from adopting, but other states have passed laws in recent years that make it more difficult for gays to adopt children.
Earlier this year, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed Senate Bill 1188 into a law, which gives heterosexual, married couples preferential treatment when it comes to adoption in the Grand Canyon state. Hence, the Department of Economic Security and private adoption agencies in Arizona must place a child with a married couple if all other factors (regarding single or same-sex parents) are equal. Gay rights organizations opposed opposition to SB 1188, arguing that same-sex couples in a committed relationship make just as good parents as heterosexual, married couples.
Find out more about same-sex adoption through the Related Resources links below.
- Find a Phoenix Family Lawyer (FindLaw)
- Lesbian and Gay Adoption and Parenting (FindLaw)
- House Approves SB 1188: Married Couples Get Preference in Adoption (Phoenix Family Law News)