I have always said that the theft of my baby was an illegal adoption. No adoption could be legal when it begins with an abduction, a baby being taken from a tied-down mother against her will, withheld from her forever more from that point, the choice to keep her baby robbed from her, the “decision” of adoption made by others but not herself.
So, in Western Australia, exiled mothers are going to receive an apology from the government for exactly the same practices that myself and tens of thousands of young and unwed Canadian mothers endured!
I will include the full article here, because I do not want readers to have to surf over to second site to see what I am talking about.
Of course, an apology does not make up for the fact that criminal acts and human rights violations were committed. For that, IMHO, the perpetrators should be brought to justice. There should be recompense for the victims, and the people who illegally obtained children for adoption purposes (the sole reason WHY these crimes were committed, to supply the market for healthy white infants wanted by infertile people who were deemed to deserve our children more than WE were!) should be treated in the exact same way as anyone in possession of stolen property. But an apology if it is actually an admission of guilt, is a good first step.
Unmarried mums get State apology
DANIEL EMERSON, The West Australian September 1, 2010, 6:32 am
The State’s apology to unmarried mothers illegally separated from their babies under harsh adoption practices is set to happen within weeks.
WA is to become the first State or Federal government worldwide to admit hospital and welfare authorities were wrong to immediately separate mothers from their babies after giving birth out of wedlock. Mothers from around Australia keen to hear the apology have been told it will be delivered in Parliament on October 19.
Experts say tens of thousands of WA babies were adopted illegally when their unmarried mothers were prevented from seeing, touching, naming or bonding with their children immediately after birth between the 1940s and the early 1980s.
Health Minister Kim Hames said the exact format of the apology was still being finalised but it would be “to unmarried mothers of adopted children who were adversely affected by past adoption practices”.
Christine Cole, of the NSW-based Apology Alliance, said it was also important for the Government to say sorry to the children taken. “They were denied their family of origin and the culture of that family,” she said.
Hi! I haven’t written any posts lately, and I apologize to my readers for the delay. I’m spending every spare waking moment finishing off a large report for the clinic I volunteer for, as the final requirement for my practicum work term there. And, following “Cedar’s Third Law” (or “Cedar’s First Law of Project Management”:) “Every project will take twice as long as you originally estimate.” And, indeed, this one has. So, wish me luck. The finish line for my Masters degree is finally in sight … !
Meanwhile, as most of you know, I am a support and advocate for young mothers. I want to share these two sites with you:
Promoting Respect for Young Mothers at http://prymface.yolasite.com
and Moms and Mentors Society at http://www.momsandmentors.ca
Maureen Hobbs, who coordinators Moms and Mentors, wrote an excellent Masters’ thesis for her Nursing degree, written on how support for young mother can make so much difference for them. (Frankly, this support is something that older mothers take for granted!). On a discouraging note, I heard from another mother in Vancouver who spoke with the coordinator or a support group for young mothers — she said that young mothers are still openly insulted to their faces and yelled at on Public transit in Vancouver — there is still a huge amount of stigma against a woman having a child during the first half of her most fertile years, the time when Nature intends us to give birth.
An new initiative by the Chinese government to try to find the homes of stolen and trafficked children was in the news this week (see “Chinese crackdown nets thousands of ‘stolen’ children“). The news is about the creation of a website, named “Baby Look For Home.” You can find it at http://www.mps.gov.cn/n16/n983040/n1928424/index.html.
As the newpaper article states:
“Many, if not most cases are not formally listed because local police are unwilling or unable to investigate crimes that usually involve crossing provincial borders. As well, many of the parents think police might be complicit in the kidnappings. It is a lucrative business that can net about $4,000 for each boy sold and about $1,000 per girl… The abducted children are mostly boys and are sold to families who want a son. The girls are often sold into marriage or to agencies that arrange foreign adoptions.”
The sale of children within China has made the news as far back as 2001 (see “China’s Baby Traffickers“) and kidnapping since 2006 (see “Stealing Babies for Adoption“) Despite this sordid history,China is lauded as having an “ethical” international adoption system that prospective adopters can have confidence in:
“For a family looking to adopt from the most ethical country, China is the best choice. They are highly regulated and have increasingly good orphanage conditions” (Thome, 2007)
But, given China’s history of not enforcing laws against the sale of children within China, how is any Westerner able to guarantee that the child they are adopting from China is not stolen? From the above quote, it appears that little girls in China, those same girls that are supposedly abandoned, are selling for up to $1000: not exactly a price that would be charged if there were a surplus of “product” on the market.
But agencies and orphanages stand to make a lot of money on each transaction, so unfortunately they have a financial incentive to hide this information from “clients.” (Perhap more “ethical” adoptions ( an oxymoron?) will only occur once no-one’s paycheque depends upon the transaction being made, where there is no financial incentive to kidnap, abduct, or coerce.)
“Mr. Peng … said some of the girls were sold to orphanages. They … often end up in the United States or Europe after adoptive parents pay fees to orphanages that average $5,000.” (New York Times, April 4, 2009).
Anyway, I wonder if this new website may be able to serve those who have adopted a child from China and wonder if that child has been abducted? Many people adopted children from China, trusting in the assurances of baby brokers whom they now realize may have been lying or omitting the truth, and some of them now want to search, to find their child’s natural parents and discover if that child really was abandoned, or whether the child was kidnapped or the parents were coerced to surrender. Maybe a photo-listing of that child on “Baby Look for Home” may be at least provide a small chance of finding the child’s natural parents and the truth? I wonder if the Chinese government would cooperate?