Saturday, June 25

Why do adoptions fail in the US?


Broken adoptions have been on the federal government’s radar for more than 20 years.

Yet the government has done little to get its arms around the problem, despite funneling billions of taxpayer dollars a year into adoption assistance for families and incentives for government agencies that increase their adoption numbers.

In a first-of-its kind data analysis and investigation, USA TODAY uncovers what’s happening, finding breakdowns at every point in the adoption process.

While the majority of adoptions in the US remain intact, tens of thousands of children suffer the collapse of not one but two families: their birth family and their adoptive family. read the story

Demetrius Napolitano cycled through 25 foster care placements and five high schools until he aged out of the system.
Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY

State-by-state data compiled by USA TODAY show that the foster system has become the leading source of adoptees in most places. Explore the date

Children adopted from foster care get new identification numbers that hide their histories. The result: No one knows how well each state is fulfilling its mission of finding children their forever homes. read the story

What happens when an adoption fails? There was no safety net for Anthony Thornton when he left his adoptive home six weeks before he graduated from high school. read the story

Anthony Thornton
Anthony Thornton
Mykal McEldowney, Indianapolis Star

Parents who have adopted internationally or privately get little support if things go wrong. These mental health and support group resources can help. learn more

USA TODAY scoured a federal database to find 66,000 foster children from broken adoptions and, in some cases, see risk factors linked to failure. explore the analysis

Help USA TODAY investigate adoption

Are you an adoptee, parent, community member or public and private employee who can help us learn more about adoption issues? We want to hear from you about disrupted and dissolved adoptions.

‘You love this country, and it’s taken from you’

Thousands of adoptees who came into the US legally as children found out they aren’t citizens. They face uncertainty and, at worst, deportation. read the story

Michael Libberton was adopted from Colombia as a child.  He did n't find out about his lack of citizenship from him until he was in his 40s.
Michael Libberton was adopted from Colombia as a child. He did n’t find out about his lack of citizenship from him until he was in his 40s.
Eve Edelheit for USA TODAY

‘The problem is poverty’

A new Florida law triggered a flurry of removals for reasons classified as “neglect” but that experts say are often just symptoms of poverty. read the story

Tiffany Clark with her son, Kylhar, 7, and mother, Donna Koenig in Daytona Beach.
Tiffany Clark with her son, Kylhar, 7, and mother, Donna Koenig in Daytona Beach.
Nigel Cook/News-Journal

Latest religious freedom battleground: Adoption

Religious interest groups have developed a playbook, called Project Blitz, to help push hundreds of copycat bills through statehouses nationwide. read the story

Aimee Maddonna, 34, a South Carolina mother of three, was turned away by Miracle Hill Ministries, a state-funded foster care agency, because she is Catholic, not Protestant.
Aimee Maddonna, 34, a South Carolina mother of three, was turned away by Miracle Hill Ministries, a state-funded foster care agency, because she is Catholic, not Protestant.
Nathaniel Cary, The Greenville News

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www.usatoday.com

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