An update from Save Adoptions

Save Adoptions has been relatively quiet the last few months, but that doesn’t mean we have not been working. We are very proud of the Op-Ed in USA Today written by Chuck Johnson, the President of NCFA and an original Board Member of Save Adoptions.  Two former State Department officials, who figured significantly in the policies leading us to where we are today, wrote a response to Chuck’s Op-Ed with several false or misleading statements. Avoiding any responsibility themselves, they inaccurately stated that Nepal and Cambodia made their own decision to close inter-country adoptions and, together with Guatemala and Ethiopia, closed because of concerns about trafficking, re-homing and other bad practices.

In December 2017, Save Adoptions filed a complaint with the Inspector General of the Department of State citing the designation of IAAME as an accrediting entity, even though they did not meet the requirements of the Intercountry Adoption Act, nor the implementing regulations. I can confirm to you that the investigation into that complaint is active and ongoing! We know that government never moves very quickly, but our persistence will make sure it does move.

There have also been two law suits filed against the Department of State and another, broader law suit, is being planned. Many of you have been involved in contacting your legislators to urge change in the Office of Children’s Issues to bring hope back to children. If you hear allegations against the adoption service providers, please urge them to seek specific facts to support any allegations. THANK YOU and please continue the fight. 

Advertisements

State Department Actions Denies More American Families’ Right To Adopt

No matter where a family chooses to adopt, as an American, where you choose to adopt should not be denied by our government. 

———————————-

Source: www.usatoday.com

Why does the State Department make it hard to adopt children from other countries?

Adoption from other countries is down 80 percent since its peak. Why do we make this hard? America is pro-adoption; the State Department should be, too.

636675224841304441-v1x013-3be4-9.jpg
(Photo: Alexandre Meneghini/AP)

The State Department’s current anti-adoption polices are preventing Americans from becoming parents by opening their hearts and homes to orphans from around the world. These children are in desperate need of loving families, and tens of thousands of Americans are ready to adopt them. Yet intercountry adoption has fallen by nearly 80 percent since its peak in 2004.

This is not what was supposed to happen.

In April 2008, the United States joined the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption, and the U.S. Department of State was given the mandate to improve the ability for the U.S. federal government to assist with intercountry adoptions. Unfortunately, the State Department’s mismanagement of its obligations under the convention has yielded disastrous results:  Children are far less safe, American parents are poorly served, and the Department of State has fractured relations with nearly every adoption stakeholder.

Continue Reading>

Emotions are Georgia

Emotions are Georgia is a campaign featuring artificial intelligence and human emotions.  It is a collection of social media posts by more than 7 million international visitors of Georgia.  Artificial intelligence sorted and then analyzed the most genuine human emotions into a first-ever digital guidebook of the country.

Click here to watch the video.

aaede8917603f29d8d9f2de7f26b38bb

Oshkosh Model With Down Syndrome Turns 3, This Is What His Mom Wants the World to Know

Source: https://www.yahoo.com

b78e7bd1223b5cb1666096c32040bcb6

Dear Asher,

Today you are 3. It may not seem like a big birthday to you, but to me it is. I feel like I just gave birth to you yesterday. And now? You’re becoming a whole human by yourself. I can still remember the day you were born. You literally came into the world with a smile on your face.

Your personality shines through more and more every day. And oh how I love that personality. I hope one day you can see yourself through my eyes, even a little bit. I am in awe of the tiny human you are becoming. Of the amazing imagination you have when you play with your vroom vrooms. Of the immense capacity for joy you contain. You light up any room you enter. And I am already so proud of you. The world is a better place because you are in it. Not only do you make my every day brighter, you brighten that of those around you.

Continue reading.

Bipartisan Senators Introduce Law to Improve Intercountry Adoption Information Reporting

image001

U.S. Senators

Richard Burr, Roy Blunt, Ben Cardin, Roger Wicker, Sherrod Brown

North Carolina, Missouri, Maryland, Mississippi, Ohio

Bipartisan Senators Introduce Law to Improve Intercountry Adoption Information Reporting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Thursday, June 28, 2018

CONTACT:

Caitlin Carroll (Burr) 202-228-1616
Katie Boyd (Blunt) 202-224-1403
Sean Bartlett (Cardin) 202-224-0779
Rick VanMeter (Wicker) 202-224-6253
Jenny Donohue/Rachael Hartford (Brown) 202-224-3978

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) today introduced the Intercountry Adoption Information Act of 2018 which would help remove information barriers Americans frequently face while seeking to adopt children from other countries. The bipartisan legislation is co-sponsored by Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO), Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH).

“American families trying to adopt a child from abroad should have robust and relevant information needed to navigate the adoption landscape,” said Senator Burr in a statement. “This bill will help remove some of the frequent informational challenges families face when trying to learn the status of intercountry adoption policies. It will also shine a light on unnecessary and detrimental barriers some countries have put up to thwart adoptions, and require the State Department to provide information on what they are doing to address those barriers. I hope the Senate will work to pass this commonsense legislation as soon as possible.”

“It’s disappointing that certain countries have enacted restrictive adoption policies that deny children the opportunity to grow up in a safe, loving home,” said Senator Blunt. “By providing parents with information on the status of adoption policies, they’ll have an important resource to help them navigate the complicated process of intercountry adoption. In addition, the information required will aid our ability in Congress to support diplomatic efforts and help assist families.  I urge my colleagues to support this bill and, as co-chair of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, I’ll continue working to promote policies that make it easier for families to open their homes to a child in need.”

“Over the years I have heard from numerous Maryland families and adoption groups who rightly complain that the lack or quality of access to information on foreign adoptions adds confusion and frustration to what should be a deeply personal and meaningful process,” Senator Cardin said. “We should be making it easier, not more difficult, for Americans to receive all the necessary information to make a real difference in a child’s life and enrich their families in the process. I’m proud to cosponsor this bipartisan legislation.”

“Families adopting children from abroad display the generosity, compassion, and heart of the American people,” Senator Wicker said. “I am proud to join my Senate colleagues on this meaningful legislation, which would make it easier for these families to navigate the international adoption process and welcome children in need into a forever home.”

“We need to make sure Ohioans have access to all the information they need to build their families and provide loving, stable homes for children,” Senator Brown said. “I urge my colleagues in Congress to support this legislation to help people navigate this complicated process.”

Background:

Currently, the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 (IAA), requires the U.S. State Department to provide an annual report on intercountry adoptions, delivered to the House Committees on International Relations, Ways and Means and Judiciary, as well as the Senate Committees on Foreign Relations, Finance and Judiciary. A copy is also made publicly available online.

The report includes information on topics such as the number of intercountry adoptions involving immigration to the United States and the country from which each child immigrates, the time required for completion of an adoption and information on adoption agencies. The Intercountry Adoption Information Act would amend the IAA to require the State Department provide additional information on:

  • All countries that have enacted policies to prevent or prohibit adoptions to the United States;
  • Actions the State Department has taken which have prevented adoptions to the United States;
  • How the State Department has worked to encourage the resuming of adoption in both cases.

This information is critical for American families looking to adopt from countries that have established barriers to adoption, such as Russia or Ethiopia, or areas where the State Department has suspended intercountry adoption, as of abandoned children in Nepal.

Text of the bill can be found here.

Armenian Festival 2018

Click to view the video below.

2e880a8993d3ce20025e7b1019848a69

36 Hours in Tbilisi

Gourmands, partyers and aficionados of art and architecture (and shopping) will find no end of riches in the East-meets-West capital of Georgia.

By Debra Kamin

Source: nytimes.com


A view of old Tbilisi. Credit: Irakli Shavgulidze for The New York Times

With chaotic yet charming cobblestone streets, dome-shaped bathhouses steaming with sulfuric waters, and crumbling Soviet factories repurposed as hipster hotels, Tbilisi is a study in contrasts. Capital of Georgia and the heart of the Caucasus, the city teems with riches: cathedrals that rise in the hills like layer cakes; hidden cafes bursting with bric-a-brac, and a bohemian art scene that is slowly peeling away the Soviet grit from this survivalist town to reveal a vibrant creative core. Conquered and reconquered for centuries, Tbilisi now wears its battle scars with pride. From its medieval fortress walls to its buzzing new luxury boutiques, this East-meets-West city offers something for everyone.

Continue reading.

Armenia: Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown

armenia

If you haven’t seen this episode yet, it’s not only fabulous because, well…. it’s Armenia!  It’s also extra fabulous because towards the end, during the last meal, you’ll recognize a special Hopscotch friend. How cool is that?!?!?!

Click here to watch.

Along These Shifting Borders, Life is Full of Unease and Adversity

Source: https://www.nationalgeographic.com

By Alexandra Genova

Photographs by Daro Sulakauri

07-house-divided-sulakauri.ngsversion.1526493620639.adapt.1190.1

Fear, thick and unyielding, is a constant for many Georgians living along the shifting borders of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Russian-supported separatist territories that were once governed by Georgia—and officially still are according to the United States and the majority of the international community. Could this be the day they wake up and find that—overnight, without warning—their home now sits on foreign soil and their money is worthless?

The regions declared their independence in the 1990s and have been under dispute for decades. During the Russo-Georgian War in 2008, Russian forces invaded the territories and have continued to move their administrative borders farther and farther into Georgia. Though the borders are not currently recognized by much of the world, they have real and serious effects on the people living in the area. Their frequent, sometimes daily, changes cause chaos for community members who find themselves, their schools, and their places of business unexpectedly under occupation.

Continue reading>

International Adoption Clinic at Children’s of Alabama: Full Day Seminar on September 22nd

IAC Seminar - 9.22From the International Adoption Clinic at Children’s of Alabama: 

“Hello!

Hope this email finds you well. We thank you so much for your support of the International Adoption Clinic and our role to come alongside the families that you work with for added support, encouragement, and education during and after their adoption process.

We wanted to send you information regarding the next International Adoption Clinic’s educational seminar for parents and professionals: Adoption Boot Camp. We will be hosting a seminar option for both international and domestic adoptive families, geared towards the medical, developmental, and emotional awareness of the children families are bringing home.   

The date of the seminar will be September 22nd from 8:30am to 5:00pm and be held at Oak Mountain Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, Alabama.

This will be a very informative seminar for any family in the international adoption process or newly home from an adoption. The goal of our seminar is to provide families a foundation to understand medical, developmental, and emotional/behavioral issues that they will face and how to best prepare and respond to their children.

Please forward this flyer to any family going through the international or domestic adoption process OR families already home with their child who you feel would take great benefit from these topics.

The seminar is also opened to professionals within the field of adoption who would like further education on these topics. CEUs will also be available for social workers. If you are a professional seeking to attend, let us know as this will be a different fee schedule.

Please let me know any questions you might have!

Thank you,
IAC Team”

Download Flyer (PDF)

%d bloggers like this: