Strong & happy LGBT+ adoptive & foster families

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Frequently Asked Qs

Some quick answers 

Starting to consider adopting or fostering? Then read a little bit about the requirements.

Read the summary & recommendations of our members' survey on the adoption & fostering approval process & support.

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1 in 7 adoptions in England in 2019 were to same-sex couples. But LGBT+ applicants still have an expectation of discrimination. 

News - from NFS & our agency friends

A word from...... James Lawrence, Head of Communications & Engagement

News that Britain's census will ask questions for the first time on sexual orientation is - on the face of it - very welcome. In a world of limited resources being able to evidence the specific disadvantages LGBT+ people face is useful. Of course - as with all statistics - there need to be caveats; how the census data is collected may affect responses. If it's through a face-to-face interview the respondent may not know - or be comfortable disclosing - the sexual orientation status of all members of the household. However, the inclusion of a voluntary question on sexual orientation goes some way to addressing the historical invisibility of LGBT+ people from data collection.

Yet it still remains the case in adoption and fostering that it's hard to prove the level of engagement LGBT+ people have with either parenting route. There are annually published statistics from the respective governments across the UK - but these report on the family composure of the adopters, not their sexual orientation or gender identity. So, while we can say 1 in 7 adoptions in England were to same-sex couples in 2019, this figure excludes any single people who adopt who are LGBT+,  any people who are bisexual who adopt with a person of the opposite sex and any trans people who adopt as a single person or with a person of the opposite sex.

In the fostering field there still remains an information void around LGBT+ people. There's no publicly available data on the sexual orientation or gender identity of foster carers, making it hard to encourage more LGBT+ people to explore the parenting route. Until this changes fostering agencies will struggle to attract more LGBT+ applicants as the impact of expected discrimination will continue to dissuade them.

1 in 7

adoptions in England in 2019 were to same-sex  couples

3 in 4

 New Family Social adopters consider adopting siblings


The total number of children in foster care in England

Adoption and foster carer assessment and support services rely on face-to-face contact

Smiling Social Worker

Some 60 foster agencies joined NFS in 2019. Find out why we're working together.

Rainbow painted Road

Increasing numbers of agencies turn to LGBT+ applicants. What are your options?

Girl on bench with question Mark - What is the support like in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Support from LGBT+ friendly agencies is rising across every UK country. 

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