Thursday, June 13, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) – along with fifteen other original cosponsors – introduced the Senate Every Child Deserves a Family Act (S 1791/HR3114). It is identical to the bill introduced by Representatives John Lewis (D-GA) and Jenniffer GonzálezColón (R-PR) last week. This legislation prohibits organizations receiving federal funding from discriminating against children and families and promotes safety, well-being, and permanency for LGBTQ children in foster care.

Senator Gillibrand stated the following:

“Our nation’s foster care system is overburdened, and hundreds of thousands of children need a loving home. We should never allow organizations that receive taxpayer dollars to discriminate against caring and responsible foster and adoptive parents or children who deserve a safe and happy place to live because of their sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, or religion. My legislation would end this outrageous discriminatory policy, create a system that supports the best interests of children, foster, and adoptive parents alike, and help open doors for more children in need.”

Discrimination in the placement of children and the recruitment of parents is not in the best interests of the child especially when there are too many children and youth in foster care who lack a stable and loving family that they deserve to be cared for and with. For older children, sibling groups, and those with special needs, the child welfare system must ensure the broadest pool of families for children by assessing applicants on the basis of their abilities to successfully parent a child and work with diverse family dynamics.

Click here to read the bill.