Friday, April 16, 2010

Crisis in Adoption

PEAR has been closely following the story of Justin Hansen, also known as Artyom Savelyev, and the reactions of groups both supportive and opposed to international adoption. Our hearts go out to Justin/Artyom and to all traumatized children. And, while PEAR does not condone the choice made by his mother and grandmother, many of us, as parents of traumatized children ourselves, understand why that option might have seemed to be the only one available.

We do not yet know if services and supports were known or accessed by this family. However, as a result of our Post Adoption Survey we do know that post adoption services and supports are woefully inadequate to meet the needs of adoptive families. And access to quality services can be limited by geographic location, language barriers, financial considerations, legal consequences, job security, and insurance coverage.

PEAR hopes that the adoption community takes this chance to reach out to those in crisis and offer support. We hope that the current attention and funding being funneled into increasing adoption programs and options includes research studies and emphasis on post adoption services, supports and treatment. Children should not be placed with adults who are unprepared and unable to parent them. Communities need to be better prepared to meet the needs of children. No one should feel alone…no one should feel that sending a unaccompanied child back to his/her birth country is the solution to difficulties in caring for a traumatized child.

PEAR’s mission is to ensure that all adoptive families are provided:

  1. the opportunity to make a wholly informed and educated decision to adopt;
  2. a system that is transparent, ethical, economical, and respects the rights of families of origin, the laws of governments involved, the adoptive and prospective adoptive parents, and most importantly the children;
  3. a choice of agencies that operate legally, ethically, responsibly and in the interest of the adults and children they serve;
  4. access to support services and resources post adoption;
  5. official representation before the bodies that govern and oversee adoption providers.
This child’s situation highlights the fact that adoptive parents are not wholly informed by adoption service providers, orphanages, and/or governmental authorities about the underlying facts of their adoption decisions; that transparency, ethics and economics are not adequate enough; that agency responsibility is not adequate; that access to support services and resources post adoption have large barriers still; and, that adoptive parents are not yet afforded official representation before governing bodies and those that oversee adoption providers. You don’t have to look further than how the media has responded to this to see the proof. The media chose to go to adoption service providers and the trade organizations that represent them for the first wave of comments on this story, and in most cases has vilified adoptive parents for over a week.

PEAR will launch a three-part series called Crises in Adoptions soon. Part 1 will be a list of crises resources for adoptive families. Part 2 will debunk myths about the availability and quality of post adoption services and options including dissolution of adoptions. Part 3 will discuss solutions to the current international adoption process.

Ethics, Transparency, Support
~ What All Adoptions Deserve.

1 comment:

Von said...

There is no excuse whatsoever for anyone to view this as a viable,moral, compassionate solution for a difficult adoption. Sending a traumatised child alone back to his home when help was available is the decision of a family who have decided to return a child they no longer want, like a pup to the pound.
The adoption industry is entirely responsible for inadequately preparing adopters, for not making sure they have realistic expectations and continue to have them and for not making sure they are the right people to raise a traumatised child with problems other than being taken from his country,culture and language.Expectations placed on these children are far to great, too weighty and too difficult.It is cruel, immoral and lacks compassion.If we find out a church group is behind this adoption and god has willed it there will be even more of a furore.
The buck stops here nowhere else.