PHILADELPHIA – March 15 – Councilwoman Cindy Bass (8th District) today introduced a resolution authorizing the Committee on Public Health and Human Services to investigate the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) policies on contracting with social service agencies that discriminate against LGBTQ resource, or foster, parents.
At least two providers with DHS contracts have policies that prohibit the placement of foster children by LGBTQ people. The organizations are likely violating the city’s Fair Practices Ordinance and contract rules that forbid discrimination.
“It makes no sense that at a time when Philadelphia is in desperate need of more foster parents, and when DHS has made specific appeals to the LGBTQ community, there are agencies who refuse to work with LGBTQ families,” Councilwoman Bass said.
DHS stated that it was not aware of any agencies that do not allow LGBTQ foster parents. At the same time, some of the agencies who will not work with LGBTQ families expressed that they have held this policy for years.
“I am calling for hearings on this subject because we need to get to the bottom of how many agencies may hold discriminatory policies, and whether the City can lawfully terminate contracts with such organizations,” Bass said.
Bass introduced the resolution at the City Council stated meeting on Thursday, March 15.
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Councilwoman Cindy Bass represents the 8th Council District, which includes Germantown, Mt. Airy, Nicetown, Tioga, Chestnut Hill, portions of Logan, and West Oak Lane. She is Chair of Council’s committees on Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs and Public Health and Human Services.