Adoption with Humanity repeats calls for National Adoption AuthorityPosted by Francesca on Dec 22, 2011 in Blog | 0 comments
Government needs to make urgent structural changes to adoption process says campaign group
The government has today announced some changes to the prospective adopter assessment process. Adoption With Humanity applauds this as a long overdue procedure they have been requesting for quite some time, and we are sure that this will have a positive impact on the problems in the adoption system.
However, the group feels the need to raise a note of caution. Simply reforming the forms and some of the structure of the home study is not enough. With the new forms will come a significant need for training current workers and those still in education. Moreover, there will need to be put in place some authoritative person or organisation to ensure the quality of that work and the subsequent usage of the forms, so that individual preferences and views are not allowed to override the government’s policy.
“You can’t just rejig the paperwork or the Home Study and say you’ve made changes,” said Francesca Polini. “I am pleased that the government is trying to do something about the dire state of the adoption process but really it’s just not enough.”
She reiterates her call for a National Adoption Authority to oversee the work currently done by social workers and local councils.
“There is no point saying things have to change but not putting the necessary mechanism in place. If we had a National Adoption Authority then those responsible for carrying out the work would be answerable to that authority and would be required to justify their working practices. Only then would the government’s changes actually mean anything and not be overridden by individual preferences.”
She points out that the government’s recent change in its stated policy regarding trans-racial adoption is not reflected in the current paperwork. Neither, she says, has the National Adoption Register. “Even if social workers wanted to, they would not be able to find prospective trans-racial adopters.” as the necessary data simply is not recorded.
Francesca believes that unless there is a statutory authority to reinforce the government’s wishes and to monitor the work done by those involved in adoption, then nothing will really change. This type of blocking of the government’s policies, deliberate or inadvertent, cannot be allowed to continue. Every effort must now be made to ensure that the new reforms are properly instituted and then monitored by some form of statutory regulation with the power to ensure that efficacy and quality is maintained … a National Adoption Authority perhaps?