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GLASS- First licensed Queer adoption agency in the U.S. declares bankruptcy

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(Photo Queerty)

Well, I was on the verge of getting part II of my current series finished up when I noted a story perhaps a bit more pressing to blog about.

Let’s take a pause from our usual ongoing cavalcade of healthy white newborn obsessed procurement industry twists and turns to look instead at one of those other meanings to the word “adoption.”

Today I want to bring readers’ attention towards Gay and Lesbian Adolescent Social Services (GLASS) out in L.A., whose board just voted to declare bankruptcy.

Pam’s House Blend- Is GLASS the first non-profit domino to fall? has a brief write up. I’ll just pull an excerpt:

Wednesday night, eight days after its 25th anniversary, the board of directors of Gay and Lesbian Adolescent Social Services (GLASS) voted 7-0 (with one abstention) to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy this afternoon. According to founder and executive director Terry DeCrescenzo, the staff is so “outraged” at the board’s decision, they plan to ask a court to intervene and accept a reorganization plan instead.

“This is a world-class disaster,” DeCrescenzo told me by phone, noting that GLASS just became the first licensed LGBT adoption agency in the country. Their primary program is providing group homes for 40 LGBT 15-17 year olds, and transitional living for 25 teens between 17-19.

Queerty’s headline puts the significance in perspective- First Licensed LGBT Adoption Agency in U.S. Declares Bankruptcy.

It’s perhaps too soon to speculate on quite what led to the decision, whether it was the collapsing economy, Californian Queer donation dollars being redirected into the “No on 8″ effort, factors internal to GLASS itself, or some other as of yet unknown factor. DeCrescenzo explained the vote thusly:

DeCrescenzo says that what lead to this current fiscal crisis was nine years of flat funding, increases in Worker’s Comp, increases in liability, tremendous increases in health insurance and donor fatigue that made it hard to raise money.

But what can be said with clarity is that GLASS closing its doors could make a bad situation worse for some Queer youth.

Having come close to being a Queer streetkid myself, and certainly having been close to others down through the years, I guess you could say I know a thing or two about how important both services and stability can be for kids in these situations. Programs like this provide the only family that doesn’t hate them some of these kids will ever know.

A number of these kids age out of foster care, their connections with other Queer peers are in some cases pretty much the only anchors in their lives. The loss of programs like this will only increase their isolation.

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