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UNICEF worked hard the last year to convince the Guatemalan authorities to halt international adoptions by applying consistent pressure on the President and the Guatemalan Congress to change the adoption laws. There are even rumors that they promised the Guatemalan congress twenty-five million dollars if they overhauled the adoption process. When the new adoption law was passed, UNICEF was quick to congratulate the President.
Here is UNICEF’s stance on intercountry adoption, taken from their website:
"The Convention on the Rights of the Child, which guides UNICEF’s work, clearly states that every child has the right to know and be cared for by his or her own parents, whenever possible. Recognizing this, and the value and importance of families in children’s lives, UNICEF believes that families needing support to care for their children should receive it, and that alternative means of caring for a child should only be considered when, despite this assistance, a child’s family is unavailable, unable or unwilling to care for him or her. For children who cannot be raised by their own families, an appropriate alternative family environment should be sought in preference to institutional care which should be used only as a last resort and as a temporary measure. Inter-country adoption is one of a range of care options which may be open to children, and for individual children who cannot be placed in a permanent family setting in their countries of origin, it may indeed be the best solution. In each case, the best interests of the individual child must be the guiding principle in making a decision regarding adoption. "
Although UNICEF clearly states that an alternative family is preferred to institutional care, the new adoption law in
Will any new money from this organization be going to poor families to help them support their children? Will they contribute to the existing orphanages? I’ve yet to hear of one cent going towards any new UNICEF projects in
Recently I heard some more disturbing news: UNICEF is trying to stop adoptions of Haitian children by Americans. I received this information in an email from a woman who reported that UNICEF is pushing hard for new adoption laws in
UNICEF’s policy for children orphaned by war or natural disasters is just as tragic and misguided as their intervention in intercountry adoption. "The case of children separated from their parents and communities during war or natural disasters merits special mention. It cannot be assumed that such children have neither living parents nor relatives. Even if both their parents are dead, the chances of finding living relatives, a community and home to return to after the conflict subsides exist. Thus, such children should not be considered for inter-country adoption, and family tracing should be the priority. This position is shared by UNICEF, UNHCR, the International Confederation of the Red Cross, and international NGOs such as the Save the Children Alliance."
My question is how many children have actually been reunited with family members? I want to see the numbers from UNICEF, proof that this policy is successful. Nothing I’ve seen in the news implies that millions of orphans are reunited with their families, yet UNICEF, among others, continue to decide for millions of children that starvation and homelessness in their own country is preferable to intercountry adoption. Does anyone ever ask the children what they want?
As many of my readers from my past blogging position are aware, I have been ranting and raving about UNICEF’s irresponsible and disastrous policies for a long time. So you can imagine my delight in reading this less than favorable article about UNICEF in Newsweek. The article didn’t tell me anything I didn’t know, but I’m sure that the average person who may readily contribute to this organization might be a little shocked by what UNICEF is really doing, or should I say, not doing.
I was sorry that the article did not mention that UNICEF has been financing summer camps for Palestinian children where they are encouraged to become suicide bombers. You can read more about that here.
Image Credit: flickr