No to corruption. Yes to families.

14 03 2011

by Rebecca Harris, Director of Programs & Services

The following as an excerpt from our newsletter, Mbali’s Message.  Sign up to receive it by clicking here.

Already in 2011 we’ve seen Ethiopia move to reduce intercountry adoptions by 90% and Kazakhstan officially suspend adoptions in anticipation of their ratification of the Hague Convention.  Haiti and Ukraine are on what we’ve termed our “high alert” list – countries that show indications of closing in the next 12-months. This is a scene we’ve seen play out over and over again, in country after country.  And every time a country has chosen to suspend or close intercountry adoptions, children suffer.  It’s a scene that is quite frankly, confusing, unneccessary, and very disturbing.
In allowing this to occur, we’ve failed the biological families who need preservation services, we’ve failed the children who legitimately need intercountry adoption and we’ve failed our global community.  I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of failure.  I’m tired of seeing children, like Addison, become “collateral damage” in the battle against abuse.  Allowing children to die needlessly and alone is simply unacceptable.

Over the last ten years we’ve fought the good fight.  But we’ve lost too many times.  And every time we lose, children lose.  This month we’ll release a report about the systematic elimination of intercountry adoption and the decrease in services to children.  And we’ll ask you to join us in changing the tide.  We’ll ask you to rally your friends and family to stand up and say “No” to corruption and “Yes” to families.  It’s not enough to just stop bad things from happening – we have to make good things happen too!

So, be on the look out over the next month – in your inbox and our website – I hope you’ll join me in standing up and demanding the fulfillment of every child’s right to a safe, permanent and loving family.  Join me in speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Department of State Announcement- Kazakhstan

26 10 2010

The Dept of State, Office of Children’s Issues has issued the below notice regarding adoptions from Kazakhstan.  This notice can also be viewed on their website at As further information is obtained by Joint Council it will be distributed to interested parties. 

October 22, 2010

Kazakhstan will become a party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Convention) on November 1, 2010.

 Government of Kazakhstan stated it will not accept any new intercountry adoption dossiers until it completes adoption reforms, which is expected to be March 2011, at the earliest.  

 Processing of Convention adoptions from Kazakhstan

Until the Government of Kazakhstan becomes a party to the Convention, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will not process a Form I-800A (Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country), that indicates an intention to adopt a child from Kazakhstan.  For this reason, prospective adoptive parents should not attempt to initiate any new adoptions in Kazakhstan at this time.  On or after November 1, 2010, a U.S. citizen seeking to complete a Convention adoption of a child habitually resident in Kazakhstan may file a Form I-800A as specified in the Form I-800A instructions.   Prospective adoptive parents and adoption service providers should be aware that the Government of Kazakhstan continues to revise its intercountry adoption regulations, including those that will establish the number of and requirements for foreign adoption service providers.   The Government of Kazakhstan stated it will not accept any new intercountry adoption dossiers until the adoption reforms are complete and its intercountry adoption process meets Convention standards.  The Government estimates these reforms will be in place and that new intercountry adoptions may resume in March 2011.  Prospective adoptive parents are warned not to enter into any agreement, implied or stated, regarding the prospective adoption of a child in Kazakhstan until such a time as the Government of Kazakhstan establishes the requirements and regulations governing the intercountry adoption of its citizens.  The United States Central Authority cautions adoption service providers that they should not offer or appear to offer adoption services in Kazakhstan (other than for those transition cases still being processed under the former regulations) until the Government of Kazakhstan authorizes specific adoption service providers

 Transition (orphan) cases

 Prospective adoptive parents who may already have filed a Form I-600 or Form I-600A should also be aware of the Government of Kazakhstan’s position on “transition” cases.  The Government of Kazakhstan announced that cases will qualify as transition only if the Kazakhstani Embassy or Consulate General sent the dossier to the Kazakhstan Ministry of Foreign Affairs on or before May 25, 2010.  These transition cases will be processed under the former procedures. Hague implementing measures will not affect the processing of these adoptions.  Thus, prospective adoptive parents who filed a Form I-600A or Form I-600 before November 1, 2010, may need to file a Form I-800A, if the dossier was not sent by May 25, 2010.   Information regarding adoption requirements and procedures in Kazakhstan will be posted as soon as it is made available. 

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