December 20, 2018. Holiday Reading. With the long winter holiday break upon us, we wanted to draw readers' attention to Tapestry Books, an online store for books on both domestic and international adoption. Anyone involved in adoption will find fascinating books here, both fiction and non-fiction (do read the descriptions fully-some of the books are mislabeled as fiction or non-fiction). As this is our last post of the year, we wish everyone Happy Reading and Happy New Year. To access the books store go to https://tapestrybooks.com/.
December 19, 2018. Why Birth Mothers May Prefer Gay Men to Lesbian Women. This very interesting article discusses why Gay men may have an easier time in domestic adoption than Lesbian women. According to what one adoption attorney: speculated: "[A] birth mother may choose a gay male couple as the adoptive parents so as to remain the only mother in the child's life." Another advantage for gay men is "their portrayal in pop culture as cultured, wealthy, and educated, with a special affinity for straight women." Call it the "Will and Grace effect." To read this article, please click here.
December 18, 2018. At Risk Teenagers Sex-Trafficked. Federal prosecutors last week charged 19 people with sex trafficking girls placed in a residential treatment center in New York. At least 15 of the victims were known to the child welfare system. According to one prosecutor, this conspiracy was especially predatory "because the defendants sought out minors in the social services system, often children with behavioral or emotional problems who had become wards of the state." These teens were among the most vulnerable; they should have been protected, not abused. To read the article, please click here.
December 17, 2018. The Soft Stigma Against Adoption. Elizabeth Kirk has written an thought-provoking article on the prejudicial way adoption is discussed and presented. She quotes these sorts of statements: "What kind of mother would give her child up for adoption?" "The thought of my baby being out there, with total strangers, creates a lot more guilt than the thought of an abortion! "I don't know if I could love an adopted child like my own child." "Adopted children are more likely to struggle in school - both in terms of academics and behavior - than children from other types of families." Her important point is that even if we are discussing real problems adoptees, we have to be careful as to what language we use to describe the issues, so that the very reports meant to help actually cause harm. To read the article, please click here.
December 13, 2018. Trump Administration Hardens Stance Towards Vietnamese Non-Citizens. Refugees including adopted children from Vietnam who arrived in the United States before 1995 have been protected from deportation under a 2008 agreement between the United States and Vietnam. However, the Trump administration is now indicating that it wants to withdraw this protection. We worry for (former) children adopted from Vietnam between 1963 and 1975 whose adoptive parents did not naturalize them. To read more, please click here.
December 12, 2018. COA's Role as an Accrediting Entity Ends. The Department of State has posted a notice concerning the termination of the role of the Council on Accreditation as follows: "The Council on Accreditation's (COA) designation as an accrediting entity under section 202(a) of the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 terminated on December 6, 2018. As of that date, COA is no longer a designated accrediting entity. The Department thanks COA for its decade of service as an accrediting entity and wishes them well in their future endeavors." To access the notice, please click here.
December 11, 2018. Minnesota Lawmakers Draft ICWA for African-Americans. A group of Minnesota lawmakers want to enact the Minnesota African American Family Preservation Act. Senator Rena Moran, the bill's co-author, defends this legislative initiative as follows: For years, black families in Minnesota have expressed frustration that county staff were not treating them equally. Since at least 2013, we've had clear evidence that it is mathematically the case," Unfortunately, Moran's solution, which would make it much harder to remove African American children from abusive families and raise the barriers to placing these children with non-family members, is unconstitutional and violates various federal laws. More information.
December 10, 2018. An Important Anniversary. Today marks the seventieth anniversary of signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This document, drafted by Committee Three of the United Nations General Assembly and largely led by Eleanor Roosevelt, provides the foundation for the revolution in human rights law, policy and practice that we have witnesses ever since. Much progress has been made; much more remains to be done. To read the UDHR, please click here.
December 5, 2018. First Baby Born From Uterus Deceased Donor Transplant. The Lancet medical journal has reported that Brazilian doctors have helped a woman born without a womb to have the first successful pregnancy and delivery using a uterus transplanted from a deceased donor. The mother, 32 years old, conceived through IV. The deceased donor was a 45 year old woman who had three children and died of a stroke. This success has important consequences for infertile women. To read more, please click here.
December 4, 2018. Important Article on Adoption Stigma. Elizabeth has written an important article on "Countering the 'Soft Stigma' Against Adoption." As Kirk says so much currently written, both by academics and in general media too often present and frame information that paints adoption in negative ways and also fails to distinguish between "adoption itself from the circumstances leading to the need for adoption." To access the article, please click here.
December 3, 2018. Fifth Circuit Stays ICWA Ruling. The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has stayed (put on hold and stopped the application of) the enforcement of the ruling by the Northern District of Texas's decision finding ICWA unconstitutional. There is a strong possibility this case will go up to the Supreme Court. To access the ruling, please click here.
Center for Adoption Policy (CAP)