Foster care and broken adoptions

I recently read this four-part series about broken adoptions in the U.S. foster care system. The article explains that in 1996, Congress passed the national Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA). The act was meant to address problems in the foster care system, including children who were moved from one foster home to another. However, the Act had unintended consequences, encouraging quick adoptions at any cost. According to the author, states now receive bonuses of between $4,000 and $12,000 for each adoption finalized. The article goes on to explore the problem and potential solutions.

In part two, the author writes about a paper published in the Capital University Law Review, which I think offers a good solution. The author explains:

“In their report, they suggest that the creation of a national system of child welfare that pays bonuses to states not for adoptions, but for better outcomes and more stable homes, might do a better job of creating those life-long relationships that experts say are so important for the well-being of young people as they grow into adulthood.”

What do you see as the problems with foster care adoption, and what can be done to fix it?

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6 thoughts on “Foster care and broken adoptions

  1. We were foster parents for years and one of the problems that we saw was the splitting up of siblings.I hope they don’t do it today because not only did the kids miss the abusive parents they were lonesome for their siblings.We would try to schedule visits but sometimes it wasn’t possible.Still makes me angry when I think of it.

  2. sundayk says:

    There are so many, it is hard to untangle them all….AND i WISH i knew how to fix it. i think for one everything has to be individualization. If you make a policy that your first goal is family preservation, you’re gonna hurt some kids (think the Greene case). If you make a policy for quick adoptions, you are going to hurt kids. We need to hire smart people who can think on their feet and out of the box in the child welfare arena… for starters.

  3. There are so many.

    But a few thoughts…there should be a way for states to work better together in the even that there are families willing to adopt children in other states foster programs. Often the two states cannot agree on who will pay subsidy, if there is one, who is “responsible” for costs, and who gets the bonus.

    Along with this inter-state thought, if all states had the same or very similiar requirements for foster/adopt, it would be easier for the two states to work together.

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