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Lifting the lid on adoption myths

New UK-wide research released by the British Association for Adoption & Fostering (BAAF) has revealed that almost a fifth (19%) of the UK public believe that being over the age of 40 would prevent a person being eligible to adopt a child.

BAAF warns that this misconception around the impact of age on eligibility to adopt could cause children to miss out on a forever family by putting many potential adopters off coming forward. The worrying concern about age is just one of a number of perceived barriers to adoption that came through clearly in the research.

Key research findings include:

  • 18% thought that being single is a barrier to adoption.
  • Almost a quarter (24%) said that having a low household income would rule a person out from adopting a child.
  • Well over a third (39%) believed that being unemployed was a barrier to adoption.
  • Over two-thirds (69%) thought that a criminal conviction would rule a person out from adoption.
  • One in five (19%) believed lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people are unable to adopt.

BAAF point out that people don’t have to be married or in a civil partnership to adopt. Every year many single people and unmarried couples successfully adopt children. People must be over 21 to apply to adopt a child – but there is no upper age limit.

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