The House of Representatives unanimously passed the Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act of 2012, introduced by Congressman Sires. This bill would combat fraud and improve transparency by requiring accreditation for all intercountry adoption service provides.
In 2008, the United States became a full member of the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-Country Adoption. Under the Convention, the United States requires that intercountry adoption service providers be accredited to increase their accountability. Currently, this requirement only applies to adoptions involving countries that have also signed and implemented the Convention.
"Under current law, adoption agencies who work with non-Convention countries do not need to meet the accreditation requirements, and this creates a double standard for the treatment of children and families," said Congressman Sires. "My legislation will strengthen U.S. adoption practices by requiring accreditation for all intercountry adoption service providers. Universal accreditation will help create an adoption process that is lawful, safe for the child, and respectful of the families involved."
As the House passed the Senate companion legislation (S. 3331), the Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act of 2012 has now been sent to the President's desk for his signature to be enacted into law.