Friday, November 27, 2009

PEAR Questions to US Department of State

PEAR has asked the following questions to Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs, Janice L. Jacobs during the Ask the State Department Celebrate National Adoption Month open questioning period that ends November 30. The State Department will be selecting questions and answering them on their website in December.

1. How can China be considered "Hague-compliant" with open trafficking rampant enough for their government to set up a website to find the parents for trafficked children who have been recovered amid reports that the CW Centers themselves routinely offer hundreds of dollars to Mother's willing to sell their children?

2. How can India be considered “Hague-compliant” when their own laws state CARA may charge ONLY $3000 total in foreign adoption fees yet there is not a single agency in the world that pays them that? In reality no agency can get Cara approval to operate in India without agreeing to donate thousands of dollars for both services and "humanitarian aid” programs.

3. Given the facts that JCICS is a financial supporter of COA, adoption service providers sit on COA's board of directors, and the accreditation process and review is not transparent, how can we have confidence in COA's ability to make unbiased decisions to accredit agencies? Despite numerous promises to do so, neither COA nor DOS have provided publicly accessible disclosure of agencies with pending applications. Why is this?

4. To date, adoptive parents, adoption service providers and adoption advocacy and reform groups have filed numerous complaints against Hague accredited agencies, some dating back over a year yet, according to a recent quote by Richard Klarberg, none of the complaints leading to investigations have been resolved. Is DOS planning on providing assistance to COA in completing these investigations in a timely manner and disclosing the outcomes to the public? What about cases where COA is unable to investigate allegations of Hague violations in foreign countries? Will DOS be providing assistance?

5. Why is the US continuing to allow adoptions from non-Hague countries and are there any plans to demand Hague compliance in the foreseeable future?

6. Will the US be one of the four pilot countries when Guatemala re-opens?

Ethics, Transparency, Support
~ What All Adoptions Deserve.

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