Adoption and fostering: Matching religion and ethnicity makes for happier families

phys.org | 6/20/2019 | Staff
JimmyJoeJimmyJoe (Posted by) Level 3
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There are around 75,000 children in England who live in care—73% of these children will be fostered and for 3% of these children adoption will be their route to a loving, safe and permanent home.

I adopted my children, and they have filled my life with joy. I am witness to the rewards of adoption. But although the number of children in care in England is consistently increasing, the number of adoptions has fallen, and recent statistics show that twice as many children are waiting to be adopted as families to adopt. There is also a national shortage of foster carers.

Experiences - Mother - Sociologist - Islam - Experiences

My experiences as an adoptive mother and a sociologist of Islam has led me to explore the experiences of Muslim children in care. The government does not record the religion of children in care but our research shows that around 4,500 of the children in the care system in Britain are Muslim.

Children of Muslim heritage are likely to experience significant delays in finding a long-term fostering or adoptive placement. Where a child has complex needs—due to health, disability, age, mixed or multiple heritage background or being part of a sibling group—finding a permanent placement takes even longer. And for some Muslim children, finding a permanent home may never happen. This is mainly due to the fact that there are significantly fewer black and minority ethnic adopters and foster carers.

Government - Delays - Policies - Placements - Placements

The government has tried to reduce delays through new policies that emphasize transracial placements. But transracial placements are criticized by many social work experts. And despite changes to the law, when finding families, social workers still try to find "perfect" or "near perfect" matches for children—by prioritizing ethnic matching.

Social workers believe matching children with ethnically similar families is best practice for both the child and the adopters. This maintains the children's biological heritage...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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