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PFP Statement re: Rep Darryl Metcalfe’s attack on LGBTQ Families

Philadelphia Family Pride denounces the hateful rhetoric targeting our families in Representative Daryl
Metcalfe’s letter to Governor Tom Wolf in January 2018.

Rep. Metcalfe’s demand, signed on to by 24 of his colleagues, that birth certificates issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania be changed to specify “Mother” and “Father” instead of the current “Parent/Parent” language serves no practical purpose other than to discriminate against families such as those that comprise Philadelphia Family Pride and other families around the commonwealth.

Birth certificates play a central role in identifying and recognizing who has the legal rights to make decisions for a child and U.S. Supreme Court decisions clearly establish that same-sex couples have equal rights with respect to their children’s birth certificates as opposite-sex couples. Insisting that gendered terminology be used to describe those parents is a waste of the Commonwealth’s time and resources.

Our families are diverse and varied, and the birth certificates of their children should reflect that what matters to our children is the love and support that are what truly makes a family, not the gender of their parents.  Philadelphia Family Pride calls on Governor Wolf and other representatives to speak out against these attacks on our families and our children and applauds the steps already taken to ensure that our families are recognized on these important legal documents.

You can find your state representatives here.

Contact Gov. Wolf here.

“Queer Parenting 101” Resources

The list below is an addendum to the “Queer Parenting 101” session facilitated by Philly Family Pride at the Creating Change 2018 Conference in Washington, DC. For suggestions, please comment below or email Stephanie Haynes at stephanie@phillyfamilypride.org.

Click this link to download a PDF of the transcribed questions/discussion topics from the session:
Queer Parenting 101 Butcher Block Post-It Note Questions

PERSONAL STORIES

18 Lesbian Moms We Love on Instagram

A Womb of Their Own

Biff and Trystan

Building Blocks – Interactive Conversations with LGBTQ families

Dad, Daddy & Kids

Darrow Brown and Juan Calvo – Story Corps

The F-Word: A Foster-to-Adopt Story

Family Focus: Jem, Michael and Tia

Fostering Hopes

Gay Parent Magazine

Gayby Maybe Epic Queer Parenting Round Table

Gays with Kids

Julie Chu and Caroline Ouellette welcome baby to family

Kordale & Kaleb

Love Comes First YouTube Channel

My Coming-Out Story: Out and Proud as a Bisexual Mother

New Film Shows Lesbian Families’ Struggles and Resilience in the South

Sandy & Denise

This Amazing Trans Couple Defied The Odds—And Their Doctor—To Conceive A Child

Tess and Nikina’s Story

BOOKS

9 New LGBT Children’s Books Every Kid Should Read Jan. 2018

A Holiday Guide to 2017’s LGBTQ Family Books

Yes, There Are Queer-Positive Children’s Books That Are Actually Good and Not Horribly Depressing

Corey Silverberg’s Books

Flamingo Rampant

The Book Nook – Family Equality Council

FINDING YOUR PEOPLE

Camp Highlight

COLAGE

Family Equality Council

Gay Parent Magazine List of Support Groups

Gay Fathers Facebook Group

Queer Mamas* Facebook Group

Transgender Parenting Facebook Group

FINANCIAL HELP

Financial Assistance for LGBT Parents to Be

The Ultimate Gay Men’s Guide to Crowdfunding for Surrogacy or Adoption

LEGAL RESOURCES

ACLU – LGBT Parenting

Legal Recognition of LGBT Families  – National Center for Lesbian Rights

State LGBT Family Law Guides – National Center for Lesbian Rights

Families – National Center for Transgender Equality

Protecting Your Children – Lambda Legal

Know Your Rights – Transgender Parenting 

OTHER RESOURCES

How Can Midwives Help Queer and Trans Families Feel Safe?

What Do Kids Call Their LGBTQ Parents?

Welcoming Schools

A Foster Family Story

A Foster Family Story
by PFP parent Leigh Braden

On September 21, 2017 I attended a foster parent recruitment meeting at the William Way Center co-hosted by the Mayor’s Office of LGBT Affairs and Philly Family Pride.

This meeting was held to recruit potential foster parents from the LGBTQ community who would provide loving homes to LGBTQ youth. I attended as a representative of A Second Chance Inc., an organization I work with that specializes in kinship care.

The organizers of the meeting had asked a panel of folks to speak about their experiences and share resources with the group – a foster care agency, LGBTQ foster parents and an 18-year old LGBT-identified youth named Frank.

The room fell silent to hear this soft-spoken, sweet, sad kid talk about how hard it had been for him in foster care, how he came to America from Indonesia fleeing persecution for being gay and how he had no family and wanted to be in a family.

He talked about his love for music and how he had to sell his keyboard when he went into care and how he missed feeling comfortable and affirmed. I could feel tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat. I approached Frank after the meeting and asked if we could have lunch together suggesting that maybe I could help him with this situation and find hiim a better home.

Frank agreed and that same week we met. He told me more of his story and how he was in an accelerated high school program in Indonesia and graduated from school early, about the circumstances he lived in while in Indonesia and the kind of fear and discrimination he felt as a sexual minority.

His father died when he was 4 years old and his mother plummeted into poverty and could not take care of her children any more. We talk for a long time. By the end of the lunch, I knew that we were the foster family that Frank needed. I knew that we could give him an affirming home.

My wife Sophie and I talked to our 8 year-old son who loved the idea of having a big brother. We had Frank over for dinner and the decision was made to offer to be his foster family. He said yes and I sprang into action.

We were certified in a month to be foster parents for Frank. This is very fast, but as a person who works in the field I knew exactly what we needed to do and how to get it done quickly.

Frank moved into our home October 27, 2017.

He has integrated into our family and we care about him.  He is neither soft-spoken nor sad anymore. He is a teenager, which is fun and frustrating all at the same time.

Frank is applying to colleges for the fall of 2018. I am teaching him how to drive, and Sophie and I are learning how to parent a teenager. Every day Frank sits at the piano in our home and makes beautiful music. We have high hopes for him and his future.

If you live in Pennsylvania and are interested in becoming a foster parent for LGBTQ youth, contact Leigh at leighb@asecondchance-kinship.com.