Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Special Act Relating to Adoption

The new adoption law (The Special Act Relating to Adoption) went into effect this month. The editorial in the Peace Weekly, raising serious reservations about some aspects of the law, noted that there were more than the usual number of adoptions recently, because these adoptions could be kept secret under under the old law; this will no longer be possible with the new law, which requires that the baby be registered soon after birth with the mother's family name. Only after the child is adopted will this information be deleted from the record. Forcing the unwed mother to divulge in a public document that she has given birth to a child can have terrifying consequences, the editorial claims, for both mother and child, as the mother contemplates her options in dealing with this difficult situation. That is the reason Catholic facilities for unwed mothers are sending petitions to the President asking for a change in the law.

The editorial cites an important provision of the new law: To receive the approval of the court for any adoption, there must now be a waiting period during which the suitability of the adopting parents is thoroughly reviewed, and all references checked. These measures, among others, are necessary, the editorial pointed out, to protect  the rights of the child, and should be highly praised.

However, the editorial goes on to say, the law is not fully considering the reality of our present situation. Because of the new provisions to the law, there is likely to be an increase in aborted or abandoned babies, since unwed mothers often want the birth kept secret, not wanting their parents and friend to know, and will oppose any registering of the child. The editorial feels that you will not find many of the unmarried mothers who are forced  to register the child, deciding to have the child. Either there will be an increase in abortions or there will be more abandoned. Obviously, not a small matter for everyone concerned, including those in government entrusted with monitoring the health of our society.

Because of these concerns, the editorial strongly urges that changes be made to the new law to avoid its possible negative consequences.  And no matter how good the law appears to be, the editorial warned, when the reality of the situation is not fully seen, problems are likely to occur. Instead of opting for more adoptions, lowering the number of abortions, according to the editorial, should be the motivation for any adoption law.

The preservation of family, promoting in-country adoptions, and meeting world standards by doing away with the dangers of child trafficking are meritorious aspects of the new law, but the negative aspects also must be acknowledged. It is believed by many that solving the adoption controversy can best be accomplished by changing the cultural beliefs and expectations of society. If we can begin to see our unwed-mothers in a new, more compassionate way, it will be a great help in persuading the mothers to keep their babies, rather than deciding for the terrible choice of either aborting or abandoning their child.

No comments:

Post a Comment