IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ecl/harjfk/rwp12-040.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Eliminating Barriers to the Adoption of Children in Foster Care

Author

Listed:
  • Kamarck, Elaine C.

    (Harvard University)

  • Hansen, Mary Eschelbach

    (American University)

  • Wilson, Julie Boatright

    (Harvard University)

  • Katz, Jeff

    (Listening to Parents)

Abstract

For children in foster care who cannot be reunified with their families of origin, there is no question that adoption is preferable to "aging out". Moreover, every dollar spent on adoption for a child from foster care yields three dollars in benefits. Yet, 27,854 youth aged out of foster care in FY2010, and, for each child who was adopted during the year, two children with a goal of adoption continued to wait in foster care. Research shows that there are more than enough families interested in adopting children from foster care, but that only one in 28 people who contacts a child welfare agency actually adopts a child. Today there are more than 100,000 children waiting in foster care in large part because of barriers in the adoption system that could be eliminated through changes in policy and practice. Barriers to adoption from foster care identified by participants in the Executive Session include: -financial disincentives for creating interstate adoptions; -lack of standardized information about families seeking to adopt and about children waiting to be adopted; -insufficient post-adoption support compared to support for youth aging out; and -absence of a robust model for creating adoptions, including effective recruitment of adoptive families; appropriate caseloads, training, and supervision for workers; and significant youth involvement. Congress is best-positioned to create incentives to improve and standardize adoption practice within each state and to facilitate adoptions across state lines. To increase the number of adoptions, Congress should: 1. Reward both sending and receiving states for creating interstate adoptions. 2. Establish national standards for home studies and for descriptions of waiting children. 3. Eliminate long-term foster care as a goal. 4. Emphasize funding for post-adoption services. 5. Encourage development of a robust, comprehensive practice model of adoptions from foster care.

Suggested Citation

  • Kamarck, Elaine C. & Hansen, Mary Eschelbach & Wilson, Julie Boatright & Katz, Jeff, 2012. "Eliminating Barriers to the Adoption of Children in Foster Care," Working Paper Series rwp12-040, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp12-040
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://research.hks.harvard.edu/publications/workingpapers/citation.aspx?PubId=8544&type=WPN
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp12-040. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/ksharus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.