Congressman Pete Stark (D-CA) Announces Congressional Briefing on “Every Child Deserves a Family Act”

For folks who are in DC, we hope you’ll
attend the briefing. For folks elsewhere, the briefing will be
streamed live over the internet. Information on the live streaming
will be available on


March 2,

Contact:  Family Equality Council: Jennifer
Chrisler, Executive Director, 202-276-4311

Leigh Whiting-Jones, 617-502-8700 ext. 234

               PFLAG: Cathy Renna, 


Who:    Rep.
Pete Stark (D-CA) is hosting a panel discussion on the “Every
Child Deserves a Family Act.” Panelists will include foster
children who will discuss their experiences in the foster care
system, parents who have been prevented from adopting their foster
children because of state laws prohibiting gays, lesbians and
bisexuals from adopting, and experts on foster care and LGBT family

The Every Child Deserves a Family Act takes into consideration the
best interests of children in the foster care system by focusing on
increasing their access to permanent homes through working with
states to eliminate laws, policies, practices and procedures that
categorically exclude potential adoptive and foster parents because
of their sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status.

March 11, 2010 from 1:30 – 3:00 PM EST

Where: U.S.
Capitol, Room H-137, Washington, D.C.


Martin Gill,
an adoptive parent, along with his partner of more than eight years
has been raising two foster children of the state since 2004. 
They are currently involved in a lawsuit against Florida’s law that
automatically denies adoption by gays and lesbians.

Leslie Cooper,
senior staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, is
the lead attorney in the
In re: Gill

Hoffmaster is an alumnus of the foster care system and an adoptive
parent. He resides in Seattle, WA with his partner, and their four
adopted sons.  He also serves as a Board Member for Amara
Parenting (a private foster care and adoption agency) in

Charlotte J.
Patterson, Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia,
is one of the nation’s foremost researchers on child development in
the context of lesbian- and gay-parented families.

Gary J. Gates,
Senior Research Fellow at the Williams Institute, UCLA School of
Law, is widely acknowledged as the nation’s leading expert on the
demography and geography of the gay and lesbian

Ahluwalia is Director of the Department of Health and Human
Services for Montgomery County, Maryland.  Previously, she served
as Principal Deputy Director and Interim Director for the Child and
Family Services Agency in the District of


The Family
Equality Council works to ensure full social and legal equality for
lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families by providing direct
support, educating the American public, and securing inclusion in
legislation, policies, and practices impacting

PFLAG promotes
the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender persons, their families and friends through: support,
to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an
ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to
secure equal civil rights.

The Society
for the Psychological Study of Social Issues is an association of
approximately 3000 psychologists, allied scientists, and others,
who are interested in the application of research on the
psychological aspects of important social issues to public policy

The American
Psychological Association is the largest scientific and
professional organization representing psychology in the United
States and is the world’s largest association of psychologists.
Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and
affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial
associations, APA works to advance psychology as a science, as a
profession and as a means of promoting health, education and human