An Oklahoma native, Charise came out to her family in high school, and the reaction from her family forced her to leave home and live out on her own for years. During that time, she became partnered with someone who was physically and verbally abusive. In the midst of this relationship Charise kept finding that police, domestic violence support agencies, and housing facilities were limited in their understanding of how intimate partner violence affects LGBTQ people.
States of Equality: Tristan in Nevada
“When I would tell my foster mom about the type of bullying I was experiencing at school, she just told me to ‘suck it up’ and that I should expect this type of treatment because I am different,” Tristan said.
States of Equality: Dana & Christy in MI
The couple reached out to two child placing agencies in their area: Catholic Charities and Bethany Christian Services. The agencies did not subject them to any in-depth investigation of their relationship or character — the only thing they knew was that the pair was a same-sex couple. And they were turned away because same-sex couples do not meet these agencies’ religious eligibility standards.
States of Equality: Terry in Idaho
Scraggins’ story underscores the need for more comprehensive inclusivity training for foster care parents and child placing agencies. Growing up both LGBTQ and biracial in Idaho, where African Americans make up less than 1% of the state’s population, Scraggins constantly encountered people who did not know how to support his growth and development.
States of Equality: Chris Strickland in Mississippi
Chris Strickland was born and raised in Mississippi and recently went back to school and completed a bachelors in criminal justice. Chris is a Mom,
States of Equality: Brittany & Jessica in Mississippi
States of Equality: Drew in Texas
States of Equality: Jason & Joe in Texas
Jason and Joe, a gay couple living in Dallas, fell in love and knew immediately they wanted to build a life together. But the couple’s dreams would be thwarted bigotry and bias against same-sex families.
States of Equality: April and Ginger in Alabama
Like many LGBTQ people, Ginger and April are worried about the impact of Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court could have on their family. They are coming to Washington, DC during Kavanaugh’s nomination hearing to ask their Senators to vote no on his nomination.
Being Vulnerable, Being Open: Lola Jessika’s Family Story
By living as my true self, I can be an inspiration to my kids and contribute to raising a generation of kids who accept the LGBTQ community and LGBTQ families.