Adoption and the Care of Children: The British and American Experience
Adoption is out of favour. Numbers have fallen dramatically, and baby adoptions have become rare events. Recent trends in family law make it increasingly unlikely that children will ever be declared free to be adopted, while would-be adopters are discouraged by a series of obstacles and abjections. Consequently children who are unable to live with their natural parents are likely to spend long periods - possibly their entire childhoods - 'in care'. This can entail years of to-ing and fro-ing between children's homes, foster parents, and repeated attempts to re-unite them with neglectful and often abusive parents. The results for the children concerned are extremely poor, and all the evidence suggests that the state makes a very bad substitute parent. Children who have spent time 'in care' are more prone to psychiatric disorders, they suffer in terms of education and health, and they often 'graduate' from the system to homelessness, unemployment and prison. The results for adopted children, on the other hand, are extremely good. They do well by all measures. When they experience problems, these often relate to their early childhood trauma at the hands of their natural parents, or to long periods spent 'in care' prior to adoption. In this book Patricia Morgan argues that childcare legislation and practice should be re-organised so that adoption becomes the first, not the last, option for children who cannot live with their parents. A child welfare system for the twenty-first century should be built around finding a permanent home for every child.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
The Obstacle Race of Adoption
Whats Wrong with Adoption?
Tables and Figures
22 other sections not shown
40 per cent adjustment adopted adolescents adopted children adoption agencies Adoption and Fostering adoption service adoptive families adoptive parents adoptive placements adults Agencies for Adoption authorities babies background behavioural problems birth families birth parents black children boys breakdown British Agencies cent of children Child Abuse child welfare childcare Children Act 1989 children's homes compared court Department of Health difficult disruption early experience family preservation five foster carers foster parents half HMSO Hundleby Ibid identity involved living London long-term foster Michael Rutter months mother National National Children's Bureau natural parents non-adopted older children open adoption original family Patricia Morgan Permanency Planning Permanent Family Placement Pindown prospective adopters psychiatric racial rates reared relationships reported Research restored children risk sample Search Institute siblings social services departments Social Services Inspectorate social workers special-needs Thoburn Tizard trans-racial adoption Triseliotis voluntary young