St. Andrew’s Children’s Society LGBT Adoption and Fostering Information EveningsThursday 28 February 2019
This post was written by St. Andrew’s Children’s Society, follow this link to their website.
LGBT Adoption and Fostering Week 2019 runs from the 4th – 10th March and is sponsored by New Family Social.
There has been a fairly steady rise in the number of adoptions in Scotland by the LGBT community since 2010 but Stephen Small, the Director of St Andrew’s Children’s Society, a voluntary adoption and fostering agency based in Edinburgh and Aberdeen thinks that many members of the LGBT community in Scotland may still be unaware that they can adopt or foster a child and would like more members of the LGBT community in Scotland, especially single people, to enquire about adopting or fostering a child.
Joint adoptions by same sex couples only became possible in Scotland when the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007 came into force in Scotland on 28th September 2009. For the first time ever people who were civil partners of each other and people who were living together as if civil partners in “an enduring family relationship” in Scotland were allowed to jointly adopt a child. The following year in 2010 there were five same sex couples adoptions in Scotland – four by male same sex couples and one by a female same sex couple.
According to the most recent statistics released by the National Records of Scotland in June 2018 there were 30 same sex couple adoptions in Scotland in 2017. The same set of statistics show that there were also 30 same sex couple adoptions in 2016 and 22 in 2015. These adoptions were made up by the same number of female same sex adoptions as male in 2015 – 11 each, but by 2016 there were 4 times as many male same sex adoptions to female – 24 male same sex adoptions and 6 female same sex adoptions and this was roughly the same in 2017 – 23 male same sex adoptions and 7 female same sex adoptions. The total number of adoptions in Scotland was 543 in 2017, 523 in 2016 and 504 in 2015.
Stephen Small would like to see even more people from the LGBT community enquiring about becoming adoptive parents and foster carers, especially single people.
Stephen Small said “Although we are seeing a steady increase in the number of same sex couples enquiring about adoption and fostering, the number of single people from the LGBT community enquiring about adoption and fostering is less. We believe that this is partly due to some people from the LGBT community still not realising that they can now adopt or foster a child even if they are single.”
Stephen Small applauds events like LGBT+ Adoption & Fostering Week in the UK which starts on Mon, 4th March 2019 and is organised by the LGBT charity New Family Social and helps raise awareness among the LGBT community that they can adopt or foster a child whether they are part of a same sex couple or single.
When Ian, a St Andrew’s Children’s Society approved adoptive single parent, first mentioned to people that he was going to enquire about adopting some people he mentioned it to were unsure about whether or not he could or should adopt “Opinions were voiced about not only could I adopt but ‘should I’ adopt. I’m a very driven person and I try to deflect negatively from my life so comments and opinions wouldn’t really affect me but they may to some so this is why broadening people’s minds and attitudes and raising awareness of these false perceptions is so important.”
Ian’s advice to anyone from the LGBT community thinking about adopting is “WHY NOT? In whether or not you can love, care and cherish a child, sexual preference, race, religion, marital status…these things should matter just as much as what size of shoe you have – it’s irrelevant. What’s important is your dedication, commitment, drive and passion towards becoming a parent. But most important is belief. Believing in yourself is key.”
In an effort to encourage as many people from the LGBT community to find out more about adopting or fostering a child and to break down any myths or barriers that there may still be about people from the LGBT community adopting or fostering a child in Scotland, St Andrew’s Children’s Society will be holding three LGBT Adoption and Fostering Information Evenings during LGBT Adoption & Fostering Week 2019. Their Aberdeen event takes places at Cheerz Bar on Mon, 4th March, their Glasgow event at Speakeasy on Tues, 5th March and their Edinburgh event at CC Blooms, at which the Edinburgh Gay Men’s Chorus will be performing, on Wed, 6th March. All three events run from 6pm to 8pm.