Policy Statements
     

When an issue that affects our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender loved ones comes to the forefront of our society's consciousness, the Board of Directors of PFLAG often has or develops a Policy Statement on that topic.

To find out where PFLAG stands on the issues that are crucial to the creation of a just and caring society that is respectful of human diversity, please click on the links below:

       

Title

Initial Adoption

Last Reviewed

Last Revised

Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, and Transgender Individuals as a Protected Class

10/26/12

 

 

Intersex

09/27/02

07/22/12

07/22/12

Hate Crimes

07/23/01

04/01/12 04/01/12

Workplace Equality

07/23/01

 04/01/12 04/01/12

Safe and Welcoming Schools

07/23/01

 04/01/12 04/01/12 

Marriage Equality

01/17/00   11/04/11

Treatment to Alter Sexual Orientation or So-called "Reparative or Conversion Therapies"

01/17/00

  11/04/11

Family Values

07/17/00

 

11/04/11

Sexual Exploitation of Youth

02/97

  11/04/11
Family Creation

02/12/95

04/01/12

04/01/12

Relationships with Faith Communities

09/6/93

07/24/11 07/24/11

Legalized Discrimination

09/7/92

01/15/01

07/24/11

Human Sexuality

06/29/87

07/24/11

11/04/11

 

 

Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, and Transgender Individuals as a Protected Class

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) believe that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals (LGBT) should be protected from discrimination or harassment under all federal, state and local laws throughout the United States as a protected class. Federal, state and local governments should insert "sexual orientation, gender identity and expression" along with other protected classes in applicable anti-discrimination laws and repeal current laws that discriminate against LGBT persons.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on October 26, 2012 and replaces 2 previous policies: Boy Scouts of America and Inclusion in legislation.)

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Intersex

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) welcomes persons with intersex conditions (also known as Disorders of Sex Development, or atypical, “non-standard” sex development) and their families as fully participating members. PFLAG members should be sensitive to the needs of persons with these conditions and their families.

PFLAG supports efforts to end the secrecy and the medically unnecessary genital surgery experienced by some persons with intersex conditions. PFLAG welcomes the efforts of medical organizations, support groups, and others, working toward this end. PFLAG urges the entire health care community to establish and adopt a patient-centered treatment protocol under which patients and families are treated with the utmost sensitivity.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on September 27, 2002; revised 2009 and July 22, 2012)

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Hate Crimes

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) supports federal, state and local laws to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons from hate crimes consistent with those for other protected groups. Such laws should emphasize community education, prevention and assistance for law enforcement to help prevent, address and report hate crimes in the future.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on July 23, 2001. Revised April 1, 2012.)

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Workplace Equality

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) supports equal employment practices and employee benefits for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. PFLAG supports federal, state and local employment laws that protect persons in public and private workplaces from discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. If workplace benefits are provided to opposite-sex married couples, these benefits should apply to same-sex couples in legally recognized relationships. Workplace benefits should include basic medical coverage, dependent care, retirement, and medically necessary care of transgender individuals to protect all families’ financial and medical well-being. In advance of passing comprehensive legal protections for LGBT employees and their families, PFLAG calls upon all employers to implement such measures proactively.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on July 23, 2001. This policy statement supersedes the PFLAG policy statement "Employment Non-Discrimination Act" of May 22, 1994. Revised April 1, 2012.)

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Safe and Welcoming Schools

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) supports federal, state and local laws which mandate policies and practices that protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students from bullying, including cyber bullying, harassment, and discrimination. In the absence of such laws, we strongly advise public and private school administrators to implement comprehensive, inclusive policies and practices to end bullying, harassment, and discrimination and create a healthy, safe and welcoming environment for all students.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on July 23, 2001; revised April 1, 2012.)

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Marriage Equality

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) believes that families and society benefit when all committed couples are able to legalize their relationships through civil marriage. PFLAG supports freedom to marry for same sex couples throughout the United States and the world.

(Adopted by the Board of Directors, January 17, 2000. Revised November 4, 2011.)

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Treatment to Alter Sexual Orientation or So-called “Reparative or Conversion Therapies”

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) joins the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association and the American Medical Association in rejecting efforts by professional and religious groups to change anyone's sexual orientation. We believe such efforts are harmful to the emotional and mental health of the targeted individuals. These attempts originate from cultural bias based on myth, misperception and misunderstanding. We encourage all professional, educational and religious organizations to work toward changing these cultural biases rather than embarking on futile and damaging efforts to change an individual's sexual orientation or gender identity.

(Adopted by the Board of Directors, January 17, 2000 and revised November 4, 2011.)

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Family Values

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) defines a family as two or more people who share resources, responsibility for decisions, values and goals with commitments to one another over a period of time, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. The family is the unit that one comes home to, regardless of blood, adoption, marriage or other formalities. PFLAG rejects any concept of traditional family values that excludes our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) loved ones. We support marriage equality for same-sex couples and recognize the value of all families.

(Adopted by the Board of Directors July 17, 2000; Revised November 4, 2011.)

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Sexual Expliotation of Youth

Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Inc. (PFLAG) strongly condemns the sexual exploitation of children by any individual, group, or organization, in any form and under any circumstance.

PFLAG and its chapters will not participate in any activity, event, or coalition with any organization that sexually exploits minors.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors in February 1997; Revised November 4, 2011).

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Family Creation

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) supports the right of straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and couples to be parents, regardless of their marital status, through biological relationships and, when qualified, adoptive or foster relationships.

(Adopted by the PFLAG Board of Directors on February 12, 1995. Revised April 1, 2012.)

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Relationships with Faith Communities

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) and its affiliates are non-sectarian, non-denominational, and not affiliated with any religious institution. Meetings, however, are often held in places of worship. All attendees at PFLAG meetings must understand that PFLAG is independent from all faith communities. Thus, PFLAG affirms:

  • The importance of freedom of expressions of spiritual beliefs, religious affiliations, as well as freedom from such beliefs for all persons;
  • The complete independence of PFLAG from organizational ties to any religious institution, church, synagogue, temple or other place of worship or community of faith;
  • That a choice to meet in a place of worship does not in any way reflect, or imply, the promotion of any particular religion;
  • That the location of PFLAG meeting space in no way implies membership in any religious institution nor exclusion of any individuals regardless of their spiritual choices or affiliations;
  • That we seek affirmation, support, and full participation at all levels within religions for all LGBT individuals;
  • That if, at any time, an affiliate is found to be in violation of this PFLAG policy, affiliate status may be withdrawn or denied.

We recognize and appreciate the hospitality extended to PFLAG by individual faith communities in the form of meeting space, announcements, sponsorship by social justice committees and similar support free of institutional requirements.

(This replaces two similar policies. Adopted by the Board of Directors, July 24, 2011)

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Legalized Discrimination

Legalized discrimination exists in the forms of:

  • Federal and state laws and amendments that prevent same sex couples from marrying, allows employers to fire or not hire people simply because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) and others that limit other freedoms that straight people take for granted
  • Private organizations and clubs, such as religious groups and the Boy Scouts of America, which have the legal right to exclude LGBT from membership and employment.

Legalized discrimination not only limits the rights of LGBT people, but it also dehumanizes and stigmatizes an entire class of citizens. It increases the chances of violence to them and hurts family relationships. Even the perception of not being straight or being the friend of an LGBT person has exposed people to harassment and violence.

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) has and will continue to work to change legislation national and locally to end this discrimination. At this time, marriage and civil unions are legal in several states and domestic partnerships are allowed in some others. A Federal Hate Crimes Law was passed, and PFLAG continues to work for an end to job discrimination via the Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA). As bills are introduced in Congress, PFLAG will continue to lobby for the ones that will help to end discrimination in all of its forms.

Individual PFLAG members work against legalized discrimination in many ways such as:

  • Lobbying their state representatives
  • Writing letters to the editor and to their elected officials
  • Speaking to local organizations
  • Talking to their friends, family and acquaintances whenever possible about these issues

PFLAG is determined to end abusive policies and practices. We seek a just world in which all people receive understanding and equal acceptance and protection.

(Adopted 9/7/92; Rev 1/15/2001; Revised July 24, 2011)

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Human Sexuality

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) believe:

  • Knowledge of human sexuality and an understanding of the human relationships which are important to the full development of the individual should be introduced to children in age-appropriate factual ways when they first start asking questions about this.
  • Families, as primary caregivers, should reinforce the teachings as their children mature.
  • Parents, to be effective teachers and role models, must clarify their own knowledge, beliefs, and value systems so that they are comfortable transmitting them to their children.
  • An understanding of one's sexuality can be enhanced through agencies outside the family including schools, religious institutions, youth groups, and health services. These are not to substitute for the family but rather to support parents in providing current information through other caring environments.
  • A study of human sexuality is only complete and honest if it includes information about lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT), asexual and straight people. Therefore, we urge parents to impart to children a non-judgmental understanding of all people’s sexual orientation, identity and expression.
  • Since a significant number of our children are LGBT, adults should relate sensitively to young persons who are having difficulty understanding their sexuality. Parents of LGBT children should remember to reassure their children about their love for them.
  • All children should be made aware of the health realities of sexual activity. They should be given realistic and useful guidance informing their choices with the intention of avoiding risky sexual behavior.
  • LGBT people lead productive and meaningful lives, especially when their sexuality is accepted by their loved ones and friends. It is hoped and expected that as knowledge, acceptance, and understanding increase in society as a whole, LGBT people will be increasingly able to live openly in caring, committed, and loving relationships.

(Adopted by Board of Directors on June 29, 1987, revised July 24, 2011 and revised November 4, 2011)

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