Freedom To Marry

The gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide

change
[ + ] Text []

Marriage Discrimination Harms Children & Families

Study after study has shown that children of lesbian or gay parents are as well-adjusted as those of non-gay parents. All children deserve the right to insurance coverage, social security, emergency care and inheritance rights no matter who their parents are. All families benefit from the intangible reassurance that comes from knowing that your family is safe and secure.

More»

View ads from Let California Ring that appeared recently across California highlighting families.

Use the key resources below to learn more about how marriage discrimination harms children and families.

 


 

FROM EVAN WOLFSON:

For Richer, For Poorer: Same-Sex Couples and the Freedom to Marry as a Civil Right
Drum Major Institute
June 1, 2003

Excluding same-sex couples from the economic and social benefits of marriage harms the most vulnerable, those of lesser means, immigrants, people who are ill, and children.

Why Marriage Matters Appendix B: Discrimination: Protections Denied to Same-Sex Couples and Their Kids
From Why Marriage Matters: America, Equality, and Gay People's Right to Marry
Here are just some of the ways in which government's denying the freedom to marry punishes couples and families by depriving them of critical tangible as well as intangible protections and responsibilities in virtually every area of life.

[TOP]

 

 


 

STORY CENTER COUPLES:

Meet some of the families from our Story Center

Nigel Simon and Alvin Williams

Lisa Laurey and Toni Williamson

[TOP]

 


 

WHERE YOU CAN GO TO GET INVOLVED OR LEARN MORE:

COLAGE
COLAGE is a national organization that engages, connects, and empowers children of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents, their families and allies to make the world a better place for all.

Family Equality
The Family Equality Council (formerly Family Pride) is the national advocacy organization committed to securing family equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer parents, guardians and allies. Their work consists of strategically linked initiatives—broad in scope, but simple in vision—love, justice, family, equality.

PFLAG
Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians & Gays (PFLAG) is a national non-profit organization with over 200,000 members and supporters and over 500 affiliates in the United States. PFLAG promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends through: support, education and advocacy to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights.

HRC
The Human Rights Campaign's (HRC) resources for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender parents and their families professional, scientific and legislative links and information.

[TOP]

 


 

LEGISLATIVE STATUS OF GAY AND LESBIAN FAMILIES IN THE U.S.:

Human Rights Campaign: Parenting Legislation
The Human Rights Campaign tracks parenting legislation state by state.

[TOP]

 


 

THE NUMBERS: POLLING & STATISTICS:

Published estimates of the number of same-sex adoptive parents in a 2000 fact sheet: "Gay and Lesbian Adoptive Parents: Resources for Professionals and Parents" by the National Adoption Information Clearinghouse, a service of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

[TOP]

 


 

PUBLICATIONS:

Children's book Uncle Bobby's Wedding charms with effortless inclusion
Bay Windows
March 18, 2008

Mombian's Dana Rudolph writes, "Uncle Bobby’s Wedding, by Massachusetts author and illustrator Sarah Brannen, is more than just a good LGBT-inclusive children’s book; it is a good children’s book, period. It tells the sweet story of Chloe, an anthropomorphic young guinea pig who worries that Uncle Bobby won’t keep having fun with her after he marries his boyfriend Jamie. Uncle Bobby explains that their special times together will not end; Chloe will not be losing an uncle, but gaining one. The book ends at the wedding, with Chloe as the enthusiastic flower girl."

Adoption and foster care by gay and lesbian parents in the US
Williams Institute
March 27, 2007

"Research documents that children raised by lesbian and gay parents do just fine," said Gates. "Our study documents that lesbian and gay couples who adopt are older, more educated, and have greater economic resources to support their children than do other adoptive families."

American Psychoanalytic Association Position Statement in Support of Marriage Equality
American Psychoanalytic Association
January 2007

The American Psychoanalytic Association supports the legal recognition of civil marriage for same-sex couples with all the rights, benefits and responsibilities conferred by civil marriage, and opposes discrimination against same-sex couples, and the denial to same-sex couples these same rights, benefits and responsibilities.

Too High a Price: The Case Against Restricting Gay Parenting
ACLU
November 13, 2006

The American Civil Liberties Union's "Too High A Price" provides chilling stories of how children are harmed by restrictions on gay parenting, and by detailing the many social science studies about gay parents and their children, it lays to rest any lingering doubts about the ability of gay people to be good parents.

The Legal Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships in the United States: A Social Science Perspective
University of California, Davis
September 2006

Gregory M. Herek writes an up-to-date survey of social science research, and concludes that ending the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage would benefit the couples, their kids, and society; and that as the public has a chance to consider this evidence, support for marriage equality will continue to grow.

The Effects of Marriage, Civil Union, and Domestic Partnership Laws on the Health and Well-Being of Children
American Academy of Pediatrics
July 6, 2006

The American Academy of Pediatrics' study finds marriage equality is good for children.

Same-Sex Couples and Same-Sex Couples Raising Children in The United States: Data from Census 2000
Williams Institute
September 2005

This report provides demographic and socio-economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in the United States.

Statement on Marriage and the Family
American Anthropological Association
February 2004

The Executive Board of the American Anthropological Association, the world's largest organization of anthropologists, released a statement in February 2004 in response to President Bush's call for an anti-marriage constitutional amendment.  The statement strongly opposed such an amendment and noted, “anthropological research supports the conclusion that a vast array of family types, including families built upon same-sex partnerships, can contribute to stable and humane societies.”

"Adoption by Lesbians and Gays: A National Survey of Adoption Agency Policies, Practices, and Attitudes"
The Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute
October 29, 2003

On a broad level, the study also demonstrates how profoundly social attitudes and practices toward gays and lesbians are changing, while the willingness of agencies to accept them as parents means a growing number of children who need homes are moving into permanent families.

Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) Position Statement on Parenting of Children by Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Adults
CWLA
The Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) affirms that lesbian, gay, and bisexual parents are as well suited to raise children as their heterosexual counterparts.

Lesbian and Gay Parenting
American Psychological Association
The APA concludes there is no evidence to suggest that lesbian women or gay men are unfit to be parents or that psychosocial development among children of lesbian women or gay men is compromised relative to that among offspring of heterosexual parents. Their web resources and publications on the topic can be found here.

[TOP]

 


 

NEWS:

View news about why marriage matters to people with children and families.

[TOP]

 


 

MULTIMEDIA:

VIDEO: San Diego mayor rethinks his position on marriage CBS5
September 19, 2007
Watch this very touching video of the Republican mayor of San Diego rethinking his position on marriage, rejecting civil union, and deciding to sign, not veto, a resolution adding San Diego to the other major California cities calling on the supreme court (and governor) to support the freedom to marry. He talks about his gay staffers, and his lesbian daughter, and being unable to look them in the face and say their love is unworthy or unequal.

 

VIDEO: Public Policy Lecture Series: "Should State Legislatures Approve Same-Sex Marriage?"
C-SPAN
March 14, 2007

Evan Wolfson debates parenting and marriage equality with David Blankenhorn of the Institute for American Values. Evan draws on the leading experts (American Academy of Pediatrics, Family Law Quarterly) who say ending discrimination in marriage would help families and hurt no one, emphasizing that marriage matters to everyone, no matter their political persuasion.
Streaming video from Pace Law School
Download video
Evan's opening remarks on YouTube

PODCAST: Evan Wolfson discusses ending discrimination for the sake of our children
The Gay Parenting Podcast Network
August 15, 2005

Listen to an interview of Evan Wolfson on The Gay Parenting Show as he discusses the importance of raising our children in a country where their own parents aren't discriminated against.

[TOP]

For Richer, For Poorer: Same-Sex Couples and the Freedom to Marry as a Civil Right
Family Equality

The Family Equality Council (formerly Family Pride) is the national advocacy organization committed to securing family equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer parents, guardians and allies. Their work consists of strategically linked initiatives—broad in scope, but simple in vision—love, justice, family, equality.

Same-Sex Couples and Same-Sex Couples Raising Children in The United States: Data from Census 2000

Williams Institute
September 2005

This report (pdf) provides demographic and socio-economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in the United States.

The Effects of Marriage, Civil Union, and Domestic Partnership Laws on the Health and Well-Being of Children