It’s been a challenging year, particularly for members of our community who are LGBTQ+, immigrants, people of color, and our Jewish community. Our federal government has pushed policies that have or would have a devastating impact on so many of us: destructive family separations at the US southern border, national policy designed to bar LGBTQ+ individuals from being able to foster or adopt, and, most recently, an attempt to limit Americans’ gender identity. This last effort would diminish inalienable rights – the very existence– of transgender or gender nonbinary people in this country. As well, under the guise of religious freedom, the federal administration is considering a request from South Carolina that could allow foster care organizations to discriminate against potential Jewish foster parents and anyone else who is not Protestant.
We cannot keep silent in the face of these injustices. Our work, as a not-for-profit foster care organization, is to prioritize the well-being of children in foster care, to keep them at the center of everything we do. Attacks on our most vulnerable community members are attacks on the children we serve every day.
Amara recognizes we cannot do the critically important work to support children in foster care, adoptees, and the foster, adoptive, and birth families who love them without all of you. We recognize and affirm all you bring to this work including your sexual orientation, gender identity, immigrant status, race, ethnicity, and religion. You are all invaluable members of the Amara family and as such invaluable to the lives of our children: those who work so hard to make sure your child returns home to you, who provide a safe and loving home for a child for as long—or as short—as they need, who adopt a child or siblings with love and excitement; the volunteers who give of your time and energy to make pancakes in the morning for the kids at our Emergency Sanctuaries or to connect with young adoptees as a mentor; and the supporters who give so generously to ensure we are able to grow and evolve to meet the needs of the children and families we serve.
This is our unity call for and with all of you. As a values-driven organization that prides ourselves on leaving no stone unturned in our quest to make sure a better life is in reach for children in foster care, we stand with our community in opposition to hate and violence; and in support of our LGBTQ+ children and families; our immigrant families; our families of color; and our Jewish families.
Here are some organizations working in our region on behalf of LGBTQ+ rights, for immigrant rights, and to support our Jewish community:
Gender Alliance of South Sound
Northwest Immigrant Rights Project
Anti-Defamation League – Pacific Northwest