This is an email I received earlier today as part of an online mother’s group post I’m a member.
Let me know what you think.
Greetings Triangle Families~
I just had to send a post after a negative experience with the Kids
Exchange sale in Raleigh today. For those of you who don’t know
about the Kids Exchange, it’s an event that takes place twice a year
at the raleigh fairgrounds where people can consign and buy used
baby/kid stuff. I’ve gone twice a year for the past six years for
great bargains and to consign so it is with GREAT disappointment that
I send out this email.
My partner was a part of the super volunteer exchange for this sale
(which works 3 shifts -total of 11-12 hours) in exchange for being
able to shop early at the sale. If you are a super volunteer you can
bring your kids and your ‘spouse’ to shop early with you, but not
friends or others. The thought behind that (per the website) is that
they only want people shopping for their children (one family) not
shopping for kids of people who were not volunteers. So as we entered
for the super volunteer sale today we were questioned at the door
going in…and I said we were partners…that the 2 children are
ours…we were their parents. They started to not let us in, but then
one of the ladies knew my partner and waved us in…amongst some ill
looks. It was when we paid that i got pissed.
As I handed the check to Doris (remember this name…she’s the head
honcho….write to her/call her…PLEASE! ) She looked at us and said
that the early volunteer sale was for spouses only. I explained that
we are domestic partners…the 2 children with us are OURS, we are the
parents. She again said in a snotty voice, that it was for spouses
ONLY, but since we had already gotten in, she’d ‘let us pay for our
stuff’ this time but that it would not be permitted again. My partner
then said, ‘you mean husband and wife only? Man and woman
only?’…and Doris continued with her snotty voice and said yes.
So, please keep in mind that no ‘proof’ of marriage is required when a
man and a woman go into the sale together. No questions asked. It’s
just one man and one woman….and that is acceptable as long as one of
them was a volunteer. It seems that gay parent volunteer hours aren’t
the same as straight parent volunteer hours….any man and woman can
enter the sale early if one is a volunteer..for all they know they can
even be strangers. But as a gay parent, we are NOT ALLOWED the same
benefit of shopping early with our partners since we’re the same
Please take a moment to send an email to Doris and the others who
‘run’ the Kids Exchange to let them know that this type of
discrimination against our families is not fair. If we are
volunteering our time and resources we should be entitled to the same
privilledges as straight families (or even a man/woman non-related or
strangers) for that matter. If they want to enforce the sale as being
for married couples only…then require a marriage certificate. What
about non-married parents? THIS IS DISCRIMINATION OF OUR FAMILIES!!!!
Please feel free to circulate this e-mail to anyone you know who will
spread the word and contact the Kids Exchange, Media or other outlets.
This type of treatment of our families in 2009 is not acceptable and
unless we make our voices heard incidents like this will continue. I
appreciate you taking the time to read this, and please follow up with
an email to Doris and the Kids Exchange organizers listed below to let
them know this is discrimination.
Amanda C.P. Lenhart