Adoption Standards of Practice

This is scary if you are married to a transnational spouse who can avoid Canadian law by fleeing the country. Click here or on the pdf file to read the full article or an excerpt below.


7 Standards for Social Work Services
Regarding Inter-Country Adoption 33
7.1 Services for the Child of an
Inter-Country Adoption

Inter-Country Adoptions
The principles of the Hague Convention on inter-country adoption should apply
in all inter-country adoptions whether or not the country involved has ratified
the Convention.

1. General
1.1 Knowledge Requirements for Social Workers
1.1.1 Social workers providing adoption services must have
knowledge regarding the following as it affects all members of
the adoption constellation:
(a) child and adult growth and development recognizing
culture differences;
(b) family dynamics;
(c) the impact of adoption;
(d) separation, loss and attachment issues as they affect various ages
and stages of development;
(e) the special needs of some children requiring placement for adoption
(e.g. medical, physical, learning disorders, etc.) and how these
impact both the child and the adoptive family;
(f) adoption legislation, policy, practice, and related legislation and policy
(e.g. immigration regulations affecting inter-country adoption);
(g) the importance of culture, diversity and religious/spiritual heritage;
(h) inter-country, inter-cultural and inter-racial adoptions;
(i) the conditions under which children are relinquished for adoption in
their country of origin and the alternatives available there;
(j) support services and other professionals involved in providing comprehensive
services to members of the adoption constellation;
(k) openness in adoption;
(l) how times of crisis can affect reactions and decision-making.
(m) how different cultures respond to the above issues.

2. Standards for Social Work Services to the Child
Adoption Standards of Practice 2010 3
2.1 The Child’s Best Interests
2.1.1 The best interests of the child must be the paramount consideration
in planning and decision-making in both domestic and inter-country
2.1.2 The child’s best interests are (adapted from the Adoption Act):
(a) the child’s safety;
(b) the child’s physical, intellectual, emotional needs and level
of development;
(c) the importance of continuity in the child’s care;
(d) the importance to the child’s development of having a
positive relationship with a parent and a secure place as a
member of a family;
(e) the quality of the relationship the child has with a birth parent
or other significant caregiver or individual and the effect of
maintaining that relationship;
(f) preservation of the child’s cultural, racial, linguistic and
religious/spiritual heritage;
(g) the child’s views;
(h) the effect on the child if there is a delay in making a decision;
(i) if the child is an Aboriginal child, the importance of preserving
the child’s cultural identity.

3. Standards for Social Work Services to Birth Parents
Adoption Standards of Practice 2010 11
3.1 Introduction
3.1.1 The standards outlined below apply equally to birth parents seeking
assistance in planning for a child and those who plan to place their
child for adoption directly with a family known to them consistent with
the provisions of existing legislation.
3.1.2 Birth parents whose child is being placed for adoption without their
consent must, as much as reasonably possible, be given the same
level of support or information as outlined in these standards and be
given the opportunity to include family members or friends to assist
them consistent with the child’s best interests.
3.1.3 Social workers must make every effort to ensure that birth parents in
an inter-country adoption have received the same level of support and
information as outlined in these standards.

7. Services for the Child of an Inter-Country Adoption
Social workers involved in inter-country adoptions must be aware of the
principles of the Hague Convention on Inter-Country Adoption and must make
reasonable efforts to ensure that any adoptions with which they are involved
comply with these principles whether or not the country involved is a signatory
to the Hague Convention.
In addition to the general standards outlined in this document, the following
standards apply to inter-country adoptions.

7.1 Services for the Child of an Inter-Country Adoption
A child is entitled to a family who will assist them to develop a strong positive
identity with their birth culture and heritage, including:
(a) ongoing contact with their culture, religion and language;
(b) the need for same race adult and peer role models;
(c) information on cultural and ethnic history and practices;
(d) specific information regarding their background, birth family
and life prior to adoption to be shared with the child when
it is appropriate;
(e) incorporating aspects of the child’s culture and ethnicity into
their family life.

7.2 Services For Adoptive Parents
7.2.1 Adoptive parents should be supported to understand the impact of
inter-country adoption on themselves and the child. This includes
an awareness of such factors as institutionalization, orphanage care,
pre-natal exposure to drugs and/or alcohol, medical complications
and trans-racial/cultural adoption.
7.2.2 The social worker must ensure the adoptive parents are advised of
the procedures for inter-country adoption including immigration
requirements, all documentation and fees required by the child’s
country of origin and the details of the placement procedure in the
child’s country. Applicants should be advised that the procedures
and policies of inter-country adoptions might change unexpectedly.