Quick Response to Reuter’s Adoption Piece

I am working on a longer post about “The Child Exchange”, Reuters exposé about the underground internet market in adopted children called ‘private re-homing’, and will publish something soon.

However, I wanted to get the Adoption Policy and Reform Collaborative’s statement below into the blogosphere immediately.

Adoption Policy and Reform Collaborative (APRC) Response to the Reuter’s Child Exchange Series

The APRC appreciates the journalistic integrity demonstrated in Megan Twohey’s investigation, “The Child Exchange.” APRC members have been highly concerned about adoption disruptions* and dissolutions* for many years. This concern was discussed July 27, 2012 in a meeting entitled Adult Adoptees Hill Meeting where APRC members met with staff from the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute (CCAI), several legislative representatives, and a member of Equality for Adopted Children. Specifically, the APRC addressed the following related to adoption disruptions and dissolutions:

  • Many adopted children have been adopted and turned away from their adoptive parents’ homes before turning 18 or often shortly after. Youth shelters often have high cases of adopted teens/youth.
  • The need for a Dissolution Review Process (including adoption dissolutions resulting from child deaths) requiring greater oversight on adoption dissolutions.
  • According to the Child Welfare Information Gateway, an estimated 10%-25% of adoptions are disrupted. There is a lack of state and national data, along with minimal data sharing tracking dissolutions (including child deaths). It is nearly impossible to find dissolution numbers, because adoption records were closed to the public and children’s names and identifying information were changed.
  • Reasons for displacements*, disruptions, and dissolutions: lack of appropriate adoptive parent training and preparation, limited or no information about child’s history , absence of or minimal quality post-adoption support, marginal insurance coverage for major mental health services

The APRC is acutely aware of the unethical and dangerous “rehoming”* practices that have occurred for more than a decade. We have expressed our concerns with alarm. We look forward to collaborating, from the perspective of adult adopted persons, with other powerful change agents to fully, appropriately, and ethically address adoption disruptions and dissolutions.

*Please note: while the APRC recognizes “disruption,” “dissolution,” “displacement” and “re-homing” as industry terms, APRC members regard these terms as sanitized and rationalizing practices terminating the parent/child relationship. While using industry vernacular in this statement we do not endorse their usage for the reasons indicated.

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