Breaking down barriers to adoption
- Published on Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:52
- Posted by Scott Buckler
Too many children in care are being denied loving homes and the chance of a stable upbringing with adoptive parents, Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove said today(Feb 22nd)
Progress in adoption has stalled in recent years, with the number of children placed for adoption falling by 15 per cent between March 2009 and 2010 and more children waiting longer to be adopted. Black children took on average over 50 per cent longer to be placed for adoption than children from other ethnic groups. And children over five were four times less likely to be adopted compared to children under five in the last year.
The Government wants to see more children adopted where this is in their best interests, particularly those from ethnic minority backgrounds, older children and those with disabilities. Some of these children are not even considered for adoption. Local authorities and voluntary adoption agencies should also be more welcoming towards all potential adopters – and not turn people away on the grounds of race, age or social background.
The Government is looking at what more can be done to improve this situation, including:
* revised adoption guidance for local authorities, published today
* investigating how inspection of LA adoption services could be strengthened
* exploring whether enough is being done to support approved adopters who are not matched with a child.
Speaking ahead of an event at Coram’s Foundling Museum, Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove said:
Thousands of children are currently in the care system waiting to be adopted. Every day they wait is a day they’re denied the loving home all children deserve. But politically correct attitudes and ridiculous bureaucracy keep many of those children waiting far too long. Edicts which say children have to be adopted by families with the same ethnic background and which prevent other families adopting because they don’t fit left- wing prescriptions are denying children the love they need.
As a result children from ethnic minority backgrounds languish in care for longer than other kids and are denied the opportunities they deserve. This misguided nonsense punishes those who most need our help and that is why this government is sweeping it away.