.

Parents Talk: Speeding Up the Adoption Process

Parents adopting children in England are to be given extra support and a "more active role" in the adoption process. Should the United States do something similar?

Most adoptive parents or those waiting to adopt, will likely tell stories of the long and sometimes difficult process they go through to bring a child home.

According to BBC News, England's government is attempting to speed their own processes up and provide more support for adopting parents.

Government officials want more adoptive parents to come forward to increase the number and speed of adoptions. According to the article, the number of children approved for adoption rose from 3,000 in 2010 to more than 4,000 in 2012, government figures show. But there are still about 4,000 in care waiting to be matched with prospective parents.

In the article, Children's minister Edward Timpson said up to 25,000 people asked about adopting each year, but thousands ended up being deterred by the process and the delays.

In Minnesota, many times training classes are required before a person or couple can even submit an application to adopt. A home study follows and at this point, the process has taken anywhere from four to six months, according to MN Adopt. Then families wait for placement, which has no guaranteed time. The full Minnesota adoption process can be seen here.)

According to the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute, 423,000 children are living without permanent families in the United States, with 115,000 of them eligible for adoption. 

Do you think the United States government or Minnesota's legislature should take a more active role in streamlining the adoption process? Do you think the current system is necessary to ensure the best fit for a child? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Betsy Gasior December 27, 2012 at 05:30 PM
Question, is the faster process in England for domestic adoptions or foreign as well? If it is only domestic (which it sounds like it is), how many English children await adoption vs. American children? Why do most Americans opt for foreign adoption? Is it domestic red tape, or because there are no American children to adopt? As an American child adopted domestically at the age of three days (well, it was a foster arrangement for the first year but I've only ever had my parents, no true "foster home") in 1973, I've often wondered why American children aren't adopted more often than say Chinese, Russian or African children. I think it is great any child finds a loving home, but why the decrease in Americans adopting domestically?
Courtney Rathke December 28, 2012 at 03:22 AM
Becky, we are adoptive parents who investigated domestic adoption and ultimately chose international. The primary driver behind that decision was that since my husband & I already had a healthy biological son, every single domestic agency we spoke to completely disregarded our desire to add to our family as *we* saw fit. We were flat-out told it was our "responsibility" to adopt from a special needs program, or a waiting child who had multiple documented mental health or major medical issues. I don't dispute that those children desperately need homes, but as parents, we knew our limitations. International adoptions have many, many levels of red tape. We had to have approval from layers of government in two countries. The cost was probably triple that of a domestic adoption, not including travel expenses. We adopted an "older child" (age 3) and instantly became an interracial family. But it was a family *we* chose and it was the right path for us.
Caitlin Burgess (Editor) December 28, 2012 at 03:56 AM
This was regarding domestic adoptions. According to the article, 4,000 more children in England were adoption eligible this year, although 4,000 were adopted. As far as the U.S., 115,000 children are adoption eligible. Also ... this just happened. Russia has banned U.S. families from adopting Russian children. Came across this one when I was writing the article. http://www.aljazeera.com/news/europe/2012/12/2012122763157421357.html
Jody December 28, 2012 at 02:00 PM
My daughter was told t0 g0 through foster care to adopt. When shewent to the meeting they said there are NO babies so any toddlers or older be readyfor kicking, fighting, spitting, swearing, constant doctors, etc. Of course, as a young mother want-a-be didn'tgo back. She and her husband want to gointernational but it s so expensive, so we keep praying and telling people if you know of someone that has a baby/child that needs a home,please call...952-432-7785
Betsy Gasior December 29, 2012 at 04:43 PM
I don't know many people that have adopted, so I am largely unaware of what is going on "out there". How awful that American agencies have made it so difficult to adopt so many children that deserve a loving home. I also think it is sad that Russia has adopted their new policy. According to the news reports I've seen, the adoptions already in process may not happen. Many of those parents have established relationships with their children over a period of years (which also makes no sense to me that it should take that long)...how does this benefit those children?
S. B. Simon January 01, 2013 at 05:13 PM
I am the parent in the process of adopting a child domestically. While it is true that the pre-adoptive training paints the waiting children in this state as all out of control and are "special needs", the truth is being in foster care is in and of itself considered by the state to be a special need. Yes, many of the children come with mental health issues; understandably so with the traumatic histories these children have experienced. Compounding that is never having a family to rely on, being moved from place to place, including placements in a juvenile detention center or child shelter, simply because there is nowhere else for the child to go. Right now, there are 355 children in the State of Minnesota, waiting to be adopted. While there are subsidies to assist with adoption one of Minnesota's waiting children; reimbursement of expenses related to the adoption, no agency fees, and services provided to help with the needs of the child, the road to finalization is long, and often times confusing. However, it is such for good reason; to make sure the family is truly a good fit for the child, not the child is a good fit for the parents. I encourage people interested to visit the Minnesota Adoption Resource Network (www.mnadopt.org) to learn about how domestic adoption can be a positive experience for both the child and the parent.
Caitlin Burgess (Editor) January 02, 2013 at 12:29 AM
Thanks for sharing. Also, there is a direct link to the Minnesota Adoption Resource Network's description of the adoption process in this state above. Click on the hyperlink that reads: The full Minnesota adoption process can be seen here.
Liam Manning March 25, 2013 at 06:47 PM
Thanks for sharing all this. We've been very intrigued with the whole adoption process. I was even thinking of doing it through http://www.achildsdream.org/content/birth_parents/birth_parentscontact.htm. What would you suggest?

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something