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Adoption Action Plan - Ethnicity
There has been a lot of media coverage over the past few weeks following Michael Gove’s comments regarding speeding up the adoption process and setting up an ‘Adoption Action Plan’. Although the details of the plan are being fully unveiled this week David Cameron spoke last week about revising the current recommendations on children being ethnically matched wherever possible, making racial placement less of an issue. Mr Cameron said on Friday “We shouldn't let an issue like trying to find the absolutely perfect ethnic mix to be a factor. In my view we should make clear ethnicity shouldn't be a factor, it's about finding loving parents.” Family Care a local voluntary adoption agency, talks about these proposed changes.
The average wait for children to be adopted is one year and nine months, with black children taking on average 50 per cent longer than children from other ethnic groups. At Family Care we acknowledge that the waiting of any child to be placed with their forever family is too long, and reviewing current practices and streamlining wherever possible is paramount.
Sandra a Senior Social Worker at Family Care explains why getting more black adopters is so important. “All children who have adoption plans require the stability adoptive parents can bring, however ethnicity cannot be disregarded as it’s part of a child’s identity and the importance of this for a child being adopted cannot be ignored. Unfortunately there are very few potential black and mixed-ethnicity adopters and that is the issue that needs addressing.
Adoption is a lifelong commitment, and must be taken as such. People however are often unaware of the support available to them, which can be both emotional and financial. With Family Care we’re there to support our families now and in the future.”
At Family Care where we can make a difference is by raising awareness of the amount of children who are in need of finding secure, loving permanent homes through adoption. “There are lots of myths around adoption and who can adopt that need to be dispelled” Sue Jones, Adoption Manager at Family Care. “You don’t have to be married, own your home or be in full-time employment, what you do need to offer is stability, patience and understanding. We particularly encourage black and mixed-ethnicity adopters to have a chat with us and find out more about adoption and providing a home for a child. We want to alter the statistics and change the lives of all children no matter what the barriers.”