July 29, 2021. Levi: Becoming Himself. Canadian television has broadcast a film about Levi Nahirney, a trans man who together with his twin sister was adopted from Vietnam at the age of seven month. The documentary details Levi's transition, the effect it had on his twin sister and his family and the twins' journey back to Vietnam where they met their birth parents and explained the trajectory of their lives in Canada. To access the documentary, please click here.
July 28, 2021. NCFA Profiles in Adoption Survey. The National Council for Adoption has launched a survey for adoption parents, designed to "fill some critical gaps in adoption data that will strengthen the work of policymakers and adoption professionals, and better support adoptive families." NCFA will "make the results free and publicly available so they can be used to improve adoption education and training, to advocate for needed post-adoption resources, and to inform policymakers and other decision-makers as they craft legislation and policy changes regarding adoption." To access the survey, please click here.
July 26, 2021. NCFA Webinar: Navigating Anti-Asian Racism: Tools for the Adoption Community. NCFA is hosting a webinar on Tuesday, August 3, at 1 pm on how adoptees, their families and the wider community can navigate Anti-Asian racism. "The NCFA is pleased to be joined in this important roundtable discussion by four adult Asian adoptees including:
Panelists will share from their lived experiences to address how anti-Asian racism has and continues to impact the adoption community, and specifically Asian American adoptees. Adopted individuals will be supported in their own experiences of racism and be provided with strategies for self-care. We will also share thoughts on how adoptive parents can best support their children and help them in processing the racism they experience. Finally, panelists will share advice and expertise for you as the adoption professionals working with these individuals and their families." To register for the webinar, please click here.
July 21, 2021. DOS Annual Report on International Adoption for 2020 Released. The Department of State has published its annual report on international adoptions during the 2020 Fiscal Year which ran from October 1, 2019 through September 30, 2020. International adoption did not escape the catastrophic effects of Covid. The total number of adoptions, 1,622, was over thirty percent less that the 2,971 total in 2019. Also of note, 2020 marked the first year since 2000 that China was not the largest sending country to the United States. The five top sending countries were:
This was also the first year that the Department of State included a covering report. We salute Secretary of State Blinken's affirmation that "We strongly believe that intercountry adoption must remain a viable option for these children when it is in their best interests." To access the report, please click here.
June 17, 2021. U.S. Supreme Court Ruling a Limited Victory for Catholic Social Services Foster Care. The Supreme Court today issued a ruling in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia. The Court unanimously found for Catholic Social Services (CSS), holding that Philadelphia had violated the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment by failing to give Catholic Social Services (CSS) an exemption from the nondiscrimination provision in city contracts, although the city's contract permitted exemptions. However, this was a limited ruling. As Shannon Minter, the Legal Director of NCLR explained, "today's decision is a significant victory for LGBTQ people. The Court ruled in favor of Catholic Social Services, but on the narrowest possible ground, based on language in the City of Philadelphia's contract that authorized individualized exemptions for any provider. The Court did not change the current constitutional framework, which permits governments to enforce anti-discrimination laws that prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ people even when doing so may have a disparate burden on those who hold certain religious beliefs." More Information.
June 2, 2021. Naomi Schafer Riley Reflects Again on "The Danger of Limiting Transracial Adoption." The debate over transracial adoption has been particularly active. We post today a second article by Naomi Schafer Riley; we posted her earlier article in May. Riley maintains that changing the Mulit-Ethnic Placement Act (MEPA) would be detrimental to the health and long term care of Black children. To read the article, please click here.
June 1, 2021. China Moves to Three Child Policy. The Chinese government announced yesterday that it will permit all married couples to have three children. This decision, taken by the Communist Party, marks a major shift from the one child policy which marked Chinese family planning strictures for decades. In 2016, China had moved to a two-child policy, with little effect on demographic statistics. In common with the United States and Western European nations, China is facing a baby bust which could have major effects on its economic and social policies. To read more, please click here.
May 25, 2021. Global Population Bust Will Change Domestic and International Policies. During the twentieth century, the world's population expanded at the highest rate in history. A combination of decreasing infant and child mortality as well as longer life spans saw population go from 1.6 billion in 1900 to 6 billion in 2000. From migration, international adoption, population control policies, government and international bodies made the "population bomb" a major policy priority. Fast forward two decades later, and everything has changed. Both China and the United States recorded the slowest growth of population on record, while countries from Japan to Italy to South Korea have seen shrinking birth rates for years. Clearly these changes will impact international adoption. To read the article, please click here.
May 19, 2021. State Department Reverses its Position on Citizenship on Children Born to Parents Through Surrogacy. The Department of State announced today that: "Children born abroad to parents, at least one of whom is a U.S. citizen and who are married to each other at the time of the birth, will be U.S. citizens from birth if they have a genetic or gestational tie to at least one of their parents and meet the INA's other requirements. Previously, the Department's interpretation and application of the INA required that children born abroad have a genetic or gestational relationship to a U.S. citizen parent." This change will apply to both heterosexual and same sex married couples. More Information.
May. 13, 2021. Out of the Vietnam Babylift, An Extra Mom and Dad. During April 197, 5 approximately 2,000 Vietnamese children in the process of being adopted by American families came to the United States. It was the last month of the Vietnam War and conditions in Vietnam were chaotic and desperate. The first Air Force cargo plane, loaded with over 200 children, mostly babies, took off on April 4 and crashed twenty minutes later. The crash killed 138 passengers, including 78 babies. One survivor was Aryn Lockhart, who was put on a different flight and adopted by a U.S. family. Aryn later connected with Regina Aune, the air force nurse who oversaw the flight. Today she considers Aune and her late husband as another set of parents. To read this story, please click here.
May 12, 2021. Adoption, Foster Care and Race, Part II. Yesterday we posted an article by Cheri Williams of Bethany Christian Service about the role of race in the foster care system. Today, we post a reply to the Bethany article, written by Naomi Schaefer Riley in favor of retaining the Multiethnic Placement Act. To access the article, please click here.
May 11, 2021. Two Views of the Role of Race in the Child Welfare System. We publish the first of two articles on the role of race in the child welfare system. Today's article is by Cheri Williams, the Vice-President of Bethany Christian Services, and Nathan Bult, urging that all best interests determinations take race into account To access the article, please click here,
May 10, 2021. The Foster Care System that Took Charge of Ma'khia Bryant. Last month Ma'Khia Bryant was killed in Columbus, Ohio. Now the New York Times has written an article about Ma'Khia's journey through the Ohio foster care system, which included five placements in two years after her biological mother was found to be negligent. To read the story, please click here.
April 26, 2021. Social Media Meets Adoption. The linked story is important for several reasons. It details the experiences of a couple which used the internet to connect with a birth mother and how that process developed. It also discusses the difficulties in contested adoption. Finally, and of importance to any families using social media, it discusses the way in which the internet can provide a platform for personal attacks on people which can move from conversation to verbal attacks, to posting the most private information. To read the story, please click here.
March 31, 2021. State Department Addresses Discrimination and Racism. We print in full the Office of Children's Issues message to adoptees: "At this moment in our history, the news is full of reporting about discrimination and racism, and social media is full of personal stories about the impact of this on individual human lives. In the past several months, there has been a spotlight on hatred and violence against Black and Asian-Americans, and we know that others have long experienced these behaviors as well. In particular, Yahoo News and NPR both published articles last week about adoptees from Asian countries and the challenges many have faced in processing and responding to this. Many of you spoke to us in November at the virtual town hall about your experiences with racism. We know the problems are systemic, and we want to convey a message of concern and support. We want to acknowledge your experience and assure you that we heard you and that we care. If you would like to tell us more about your personal experience in this regard, we will listen.
Center for Adoption Policy (CAP)
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