The Home Front

Heartbreaking Investigation of ‘Re-Homed’ International Adoptees

Reuters has investigated the practice of “re-homing” children adopted from other countries. What they uncovered is truly devastating. 

America’s underground market for adopted children, a loose Internet network where desperate parents seek new homes for kids they regret adopting.

Through Yahoo and Facebook groups, parents and others advertise the unwanted children and then pass them to strangers with little or no government scrutiny, sometimes illegally, a Reuters investigation has found. It is a largely lawless marketplace. Often, the children are treated as chattel, and the needs of parents are put ahead of the welfare of the orphans they brought to America.

Reuters analyzed 5,029 posts from a five-year period on one Internet message board, a Yahoo group. On average, a child was advertised for re-homing there once a week. Most of the children ranged in age from 6 to 14 and had been adopted from abroad – from countries such as Russia and China, Ethiopia and Ukraine. The youngest was 10 months old.

Though Yahoo closed down that particular message board, many others still exist. The practice skirts the legal process, and any laws in place are seldom enforced.

While this certainly needed to be exposed, one can only think that it will put further dampers on international adoptions. 

There are five parts to this hard-hitting series. (Part Two thankfully has a FAQ that includes information on where parents who are having a hard time with an adopted child can go for assistance.) Find them here.



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