Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

Haiti Overhauls Adoption Procedures

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Haitian President Michel Martelly on Thursday announced that he intends to ratify the Hague Convention on Inter-Country Adoption, which sets forth guidelines and procedures governing international adoptions and mandates that all adoptions be processed by government-recognized agencies.

The announcement was made after a summit in Port-au-Prince that brought together representatives from ten adoption-destination countries to discuss efforts to revamp Haiti’s adoption laws.  Problems with Haiti’s adoption laws entered the international spotlight following numerous incidents in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake, including one occasion in which a group of U.S. missionaries were accused of kidnapping 33 children from Haiti under the guise of adoption.

Prior to the earthquake, in 2007, UNICEF reported that there were approximately 380,000 orphans in Haiti—a number that has surely increased in recent years.

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