Leslie Cooper

Leslie Cooper is a senior staff attorney at the ACLU LGBT & HIV Project.  Since joining the Project in 1998, much of her work has focused on protecting the rights of LGBT parents and their children.  She was lead counsel in the cases that brought down Florida’s notorious ban on adoption by lesbians and gay men and a similar restriction in Arkansas.  In addition to her work on parenting, Leslie has brought cases involving a range of issues including the freedom to marry, LGBT students’ rights at school, employment discrimination against LGBT and HIV-positive workers, and access to healthcare for transgender prisoners.  She also works on state legislative advocacy on a variety of issues.

Articles by this author

The Trump administration's agenda will ultimately cause the most harm to children in foster care who are in need of a loving home. Views
Saturday, June 01, 2019
Trump's Anti-LGBTQ Agenda Will Keep Foster Children From Having a Loving Home
Last week, while the Department of Health and Human Services was rolling-back Obama administration protections for transgender people , it was reported that HHS is also preparing to issue a nationwide rule that would allow for discrimination against same-sex couples seeking to open their hearts and...
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'Laws like SB 1140 in Oklahoma and SB248 in Kansas are not only terrible policy — they are also unconstitutional." (Photo: Africa Studio/Shutterstock) Views
Monday, May 07, 2018
Children in Oklahoma and Kansas Need Love and Stability — Not Discrimination Against Good Families
Kellie spent some of her formative years in foster care. The experience led her to become a child welfare professional, who tries to find stability for children in Kansas. She knows personally that what young people in foster care need more than anything are loving homes where they can feel safe,...
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Allowing state-contracted agencies to screen out prospective families based on religious criteria not only harms the children most in need, it is also unconstitutional. Views
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
Same-Sex Couples Are Being Turned Away From Becoming Foster and Adoptive Parents in Michigan. So We’re Suing.
Like many other states, Michigan outsources child welfare services to private agencies. These agencies enter into contracts with the state to care for children in the foster care system — including finding them appropriate foster and adoptive families — and are paid with taxpayer dollars to do this...
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