EACH - Equality for Adopted Children


EACH will advocate for legislation that provides equal treatment of adopted children of American citizens with biological children of American citizens, whether the child is born abroad or in America. Initially, the major area of focus for EACH will be at the federal level. Therefore, EACH will focus on issues involving adoptions of foreign born children, since domestic adoptions are governed by state laws.

EACH has been a major advocate for two pieces of legislation that have been introduced, but have not yet passed the full Congress and been signed into law: The Intercountry Adoption Reform Act (ICARE) and the Natural Born Citizen Act (NBC Act). Since their introduction in 2003 and 2004, ICARE has been passed by the full Senate as an amendment to a larger immigration bill which did not become law. The NBC Act was not reintroduced in the 109th or 110th Congress.

Over the course of the last two years, EACH has been involved in developing two new bills that accomplish many of the same objectives of ICARE and the NBC Act but address various concerns that were raised with these prior proposed bills. The Foreign Adopted Children Equality Act (FACE Act) and the Families for Orphans Act (FFO Act) were both introduced in June 2009. The FACE Act incorporates many of the practical elements of the prior ICARE Act mainly removing internationally adopted children from the immigration process as well as establishing the eligibility of internationally adopted children of American citizens to run for President which was previously addressed in the NBC Act.

The FFO Act also improves upon elements of ICARE which sought to establish an international adoption office within the Department of State. However, the FFO Act takes a much broader approach. The new legislation would establish an office within the Department of State to develop and advocate for a holistic approach to orphan care worldwide with the objective being permanent parental care for orphans instead of only providing survival tools. There is currently no comprehensive U.S. policy for addressing the global orphan epidemic that is growing daily as a result of war, famine and the ravages of AIDS. The Office of Orphan Policy, Diplomacy and Development that is created by the FFO Act would coordinate efforts of all federal agencies in regards to orphans with the end goal of placing these most vulnerable children in permanent loving families. The Act seeks to accomplish this by providing technical and financial assistance to foreign countries who request help in developing child welfare systems that will keep children with their biological families when possible and when not possible, seek to find permanent homes for them either with relatives or through domestic or international adoption.

EACH will be pursuing the enactment of both these bills during the 111th Congress. More detailed information on both the FACE Act and the FFO Act can be found by clicking on the links to the left.

Help EACH continue to advocate on behalf of adopted children...more.