The US Department of State has released their annual report on intercountry adoption for FY2019. There were only 819 adoptions from China to the US, a significant decrease. Note that FY2019 ended on October 1, 2019 so this cannot be attributed to pandemic closures. The report notes:
“In FY 2019, consular officers issued 2,971
immigrant visas to children adopted abroad, or to be adopted in the United States by U.S. citizens. While the overall number of intercountry adoptions to the United States declined from the previous year, 75% of that decline can be attributed to the decrease of intercountry adoption from two countries, China (a decrease of 656) and Ethiopia (a decrease of 166).”
Adoptions from Ukraine, Liberia, Hungary, and Colombia have increased as people look for program alternatives to China. This increase is still relatively minor, as the overall number of intercountry adoptions was below 3,000. Ten years ago there were more than 3,000 adoptions from China alone.
On Friday, May 29th, CCAI broke the news that the as of January 1, 2021 children in state care in China will not “age out” of adoption eligibility until their 18th birthday.
All processing required for dossiers remains either slow or unavailable.
On June 1, it was announced that USCIS would furlough 11,000 employees starting July 20th.
USCIS has announced a furlough starting 20 July pending funding. Expect longer delays, reduced hours and less responsive customer service.
“With a loss of nearly 11,000 employees, work and visitor visa petitions, asylum and citizenship/naturalization applications, green cards and refugee applications will not be processed.” -Everett Kelley, AFGE national president.
Although select USCIS services resumed June 4th, application support centers which take fingerprinting for adoption applications remain closed.
According to Ladybugs N Love Adoption services, the Chicago Chinese consulate is still closed for document processing. The DC Embassy is open about 4 hours a week by appointment only for emergency services. Documents submitted to the Chinese Embassy must be sent to the US Dept of State first, and their mail in service is taking about 7 weeks currently.
In one lone bright spot, the CCCWA has begun to issue LIDs and LOAs. Travel remains unavailable for the foreseeable future.
The Stauffer family adoption dissolution has been national and international news over the past week. Normally when there is a big adoption related event which people are discussing I will make a blog post on the subject. However, I know the Stauffer family personally. I met them in person during the adoption process and after their son came home. I have been in contact with Myka during their struggle with the adoption over the past two years. Because I’m not a viewer of their YouTube channel, I don’t know what is information they have made public versus what was told to me personally. For this reason, I will not be posting about the situation. Here are two posts I have written previously on the topic:
In addition, I would like to share two posts written by adult adoptees because the adoption community needs to amplify adult adoptee voices more. One was written specifically about the situation and the other is generally applicable.