As I mentioned earlier, the new group to oppose the law restricting foster parenting and adoption was evident at polls today. Leaders also held a news conference to talk about their opposition to the measure, which is aimed at gay people and part of an indirect effort to mobilize Religious Right voters in November. Gay bashing aside, the measure will further restrict an already undersized pool of potential parents for children who need them; inject the state into private sexual practices (including those of heterosexuals), and create enormous legal problems.
Little Rock, Arkansas – February 4, 2008 – Arkansas Families First, a statewide coalition of community leaders opposed to the proposed foster care and adoption ban in Arkansas, announced an Election Day effort – “Stand Up For Kids”. The effort will feature volunteers urging fellow Arkansans not to sign petitions that would put an initiative on the November ballot that would restrict Arkansans’ ability to adopt and serve as foster parents.
Members of Arkansas Families First will be at polling sites in more than 20 Arkansas communities to educate voters about why they should refuse to sign petitions for the proposed ballot initiative that restricts foster-care and adoption of parentless and neglected children.
“In today’s world there are too many threats on the well being of our state’s children, too many children in need of healthy and loving foster and adoptive homes” said Dr. Eddie Ochoa, President of the Arkansas Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. “The federal government has continued to criticize our state for the shortage of adoptive and foster care homes. We can’t afford to limit the number of stable homes for kids in need or to let kids fall through the cracks when there are qualified and caring households with open doors to serve.”
Jennifer Ferguson of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families added that, “the reality is that we already have too many children without good homes, and this proposal will leave even more children waiting for a loving home. We hope Arkansans will decline to sign the petitions for this ill-conceived and harmful initiative.”
Arkansas Families First is a statewide grassroots organization created to advocate on behalf of children. It includes the Arkansas chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Arkansas Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, the Inter Faith Council, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, and Just Communities of Central Arkansas, the Arkansas Psychological Association, the ACLU of Arkansas, the Arkansas Public Policy Panel, the Center for Artistic Revolution, and the Stonewall Democrats.