Adoption Second Placements Need Regulation
With increasing frequency, adoptions that do not work out result in families attempting to place children for a second time. The issue needs scrutiny and increased regulation. However, Wisconsin’s recent passage of a law which prohibits using the internet to find a second placement for the child is not the answer.
The federal Government Accounting Office conducted an investigation into unregulated transfers of adopted children and focused on the use of the internet to “rehome” those children. Internet use is a small part of a larger problem involving second placements. The focus should be on better education for adopting parents so they understand that the placement of children that are older and/or that have had trauma during their childhood may make them difficult to successfully raise. In addition, post-adoption placement services are limited. Respite care is limited for those parents that have adopted more difficult children. There are times when movement of a child from one home to another may be appropriate. We need better regulation of those transfers without necessarily condemning the transferors. We need to know which agencies specialize in and are qualified to make second placements. We need to be assured that the children and parents have had the benefit of qualified therapists during both the relationship and the transition. Whether international placements or foster care adoptions, as a society we must improve our treatment of these children.