The Christian Institute News Release
Wednesday 6 February 2002
For immediate release

Same-sex parenting
is bad for kids

As the Government seems set to allow a free vote on gay adoption, a new book highlights the overwhelming evidence that same-sex parenting is bad for children.

Sociologist Patricia Morgan has written the largest review of the research ever published in Europe. The book, Children as trophies?, considers 144 academic papers including 50 on same-sex parenting.

In 1998 the then Home Secretary, Jack Straw MP, said that he was against gay adoption because "We should not see children as trophies". He argued that the evidence showed marriage is the best environment in which to raise children.

Patricia Morgan agrees:
"If public policy is based on clear research, there is no case for changing the adoption law to allow same-sex couples or unmarried couples to be able to adopt children."

"It is difficult to find such poor quality research as that which purports to show that same-sex parenting is as least as good if not superior to parenting by married couples. In many cases the word 'research' is a misnomer since often the only evidence consists of collections of anecdotes. This is often advocacy parading as research. I hope my book will raise the standard of debate in this area."

Colin Hart, Director of The Christian Institute, said today:
"The overwhelming evidence is that same-sex parenting is bad for kids. Patricia Morgan's book will be a devastating blow to those who think that any combination of adults can make good parents. The research is crystal clear: children need a male and a female role model in a permanent relationship."

"Many involved in social work support homosexual adoption, but in practice it happens very rarely. There may only be 3 or 4 cases a year. But things will not stay this way if the Government reverses its position and supports amendments to its Adoption Bill allowing the grounds for adoption to be changed."

"If homosexual adoption is legalised children will suffer. I think it's cruel deliberately to deny adopted children a mother or a father for no other reason than to support gay rights."

Mr Hart continued : "My great fear is that the Government will ignore the evidence and cave into pressure from those who want same sex-adoption for ideological reasons. The public are not convinced. British Social Attitudes reports that 84% of the public oppose adoption by male homosexuals (page 10 of Children as trophies)."

"Patricia Morgan's book also shows that parenting by married couples produces better outcomes for children than parenting in cohabiting households. I hope that the Government will not make it legal to place children with adults who are only in a temporary relationship."

"Christians such as Dr Barnardo pioneered the substitute care of children in this country. Even today most of the large charities involved with adoption and fostering have Christian roots. It is therefore very sad that most of these agencies now support homosexual adoption. Only the Evangelical and Roman Catholic agencies still resist homosexual fostering and adoption. This book by Patricia Morgan shows that the evidence is clearly on their side."

Key points from Children as trophies?

  • There is not a single published comparative study of the effects of homosexual foster care or adoption. Advocates of gay adoption can only cite studies on homosexual parenting. (page 127)

  • Despite repeated assertions to the contrary, many studies indicate significant differences between homosexual and heterosexual parenting outcomes for children, particularly the likelihood that children of homosexuals may become involved in homosexual behaviour themselves. (page 67)

  • In fact some researchers in favour of gay adoption even admit that such children are more likely to be homosexual. (pages 77, 78, 85ff)

  • Gender confusion seems to be rife with daughters of lesbian mothers. (page 78)

  • Studies commonly fail to test any hypothesis or use a proper control group. Sample sizes are so small that no deductions can be made. One study which was headlined as "Gay men make better fathers" did not even have any children in the study but merely asked opinions. (pages 55-56)

  • Evidence from around the world shows that the married family is the most successful child rearing environment. (Britain, USA, The Netherlands, New Zealand - see pages 87-90)

  • Pro-gay sociologists argue that gay adoption should go ahead despite the lack of evidence in support. (page 132)

- ENDS -

Note for Editors:
(1) The largest study of UK adoption placements (based on year 98/99) found that 95% of adoptions were with married couples and 5% with single people.
(2) In rare cases adoption by a single person can have benefits for a child who has been abused or who has had multiple foster placements.
(3) Adoption by a homosexual couple is illegal. So too is adoption by an unmarried couple. It has been reported that in 1998 there were only 3 cases where single person adoption has been used to circumvent this legal ban on gay couples. Adoption by homosexuals is very rare indeed, but fostering by homosexuals is more common.
(4) The Government's Labour Force Survey found that 0.2% of households comprise same-sex couples. (see pages 9-10)

Children as trophies? (ISBN 1 90108618 6) by Patricia Morgan is priced £8.00 inc p+p
For more information contact : Colin Hart on : 0191 281 5664