Monday, January 18, 2010

Not the Time to Adopt Haitian Quake Victims, Experts Say

Haitian orphanages were already overflowing, and now they are overwhelmed. Orphanage directors there say that adoptions that were nearly finalized might be caught in a quagmire of lost paperwork.

Adoption agencies in the United States say people want to adopt children left orphaned by the quake. But with so much chaos, it is unclear whether or when Haitian authorities will release the children for adoption. For one thing, it might be difficult to prove that a child has no living parents. Even before the quake, Haitian adoptions had slowed significantly and could take up to two or three years to complete.

And, of course, allowing adoptions in the midst of chaos only opens the door to fraud, suspicion and diplomatic nightmares.

The Council said Friday it had received encouraging news about adoptions that had made their way through the Haitian legal system:

"Joint Council has confirmed that a handful of Haitian children, whose adoptions were finalized by the Haitian courts and whose adoptive parents were in Port au Prince at the time of the earthquake, have received their visa to enter the U.S. Joint Council shares in the joy and relief felt by these families and children. While the issuance of visas in these specific cases is very welcomed news, it should not encourage adoptive parents to travel to Haiti in an attempt to secure a visa for the child they are adopting. Such individual efforts may in fact be counterproductive and dangerous."

Scroll to the bottom of this Joint Council Web page to find out about adoption agencies around the United States with connections in Haiti.

For now, the best thing for people who want to help the children of Haiti, it appears, is to support agencies involved in their rescue, shelter and medical care. 

Note: this is very important as the Joint Council is a VERY PRO ADOPTION organization! I thus suggest copy and pasting this statement wherever you see blogs and news stories, church groups etc. trying to help "save" these kids by rushing in and snatching them up.  

1 comment:

america said...

It is good to support the agencies yes...but there are genuine and there are fraudulent ones here too.So just make sure your help is reaching the Haitians.

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