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'Kinship, Family, and Support Networks' booklet cover

Kinship, Family, and Support Networks in Scotland’s LGBTI+ Community

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Our report explores kinship & support networks in the LGBTI+ community. Our diverse chosen families & support networks are a lifeline. They need to be recognised properly.

Kinship networks in the LGBTI+ community have long been considered ‘different’. We do not always abide by traditional notions of ‘family’, and collectively we have had to redefine what family means.

Throughout history, our community has taken on the responsibility of looking out for ourselves. Having been neglected by wider society, and subject to discrimination, we have forged strong and unbreakable kinship networks, supporting each other when the world at large has not. Many have been alienated or ostracised from their biological family, and some have separated themselves due to prejudice or fear. Some have ‘chosen’ their own families instead. For many, these support networks are a lifeline.

As society, and equalities, have progressed, LGBTI+ people have finally been afforded new and assisted ways in which to create families, but within policy and legislation in Scotland, our diverse families, support, and kinship networks continue not to be considered. We decided to find out how this impacts us, what can be changed to make our lives easier, and most importantly, what can be done to ensure our networks of support are fully recognised.

This report outlines our findings, and our related policy recommendations based on these, our knowledge of the LGBTI+ community, and the policy landscape of Scotland.

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