Saturday, January 16, 2010

Evacuate the Orphans in Haiti

Excuse, after excuse after excuse, on and on and on.

In Haiti right now are hundreds of thousands of orphaned children, both economic and literal. I have heard good ideas for how to help them and for every great idea I come across, I find 3 oppositions. At least 3. Different ways of saying oh hell no.

The orphans who have adoptive families in the United States need to be granted immediate evacuation. I can understand that the building housing the vast volumes of paperwork is destroyed. I also understand that the personnel in charge of processing the vast volumes of paperwork have either died or are attending to their families and friends. But I know there are duplicates out there. There are copies and there are probably multiple copies. Can we please forget for this moment in time that the process of adoption is specifically developed to be redundant, overbearing and intimidating, with futile expenses saddled onto every facet and with arduous steps so mangled in useless subsets that it grinds mercilessly into its own impediment at every turn? Can we please just forget that for a minute? For a month?

Can we say that for the next month or two or six that if you have passed your background check and completed your home study that we will find your child and bring her to you? That for just this moment in time we can ignore the maze and go straight to the goal line. That if you have been matched with a child in Haiti, we will get you your child and we will get him out of that unbearable mess of misery and death, filth and trash, illness, starvation and dehydration. Out of the pain. That we will get her home to you safe. That instead of the focus on legalities, passports, visas, immigration and all the other fussed up government policy and regulation we will be HUMAN.

It's not right that people adopting from Haiti have had children withering in orphanages for years. It's so very very wrong that a child waits 2 to 3 years for a family when one is waiting so specifically for them. But now? Now? Now, if we leave these children as they are it is unforgivable. The people of this country can literally change the direction of a river. Surely we can move small children into safety. Into their new homes, with their adopting families.

I know, we have to have codes. We have to have forms. We have to have complex indecipherable regulations. We have to have checks and balances and we have to be sure no child is placed with a pedophile, an ax murderer, an abuser. We have to use a minimum of 15 different government agencies to process one simple child moving into one simple family, with a minimum of 3 separate people working in each position, each one confusing the situation all the way around, each defining the same regulations with their own perspective.

A newsperson pointed out that simply bringing all of Haiti's orphans to the U.S. could result in complications later. Some of the children might not be real orphans. Some might have extended family who want them. That's not what I am saying. I am saying, children who have identified families here should come here. Now. Adoption agencies know who the families are. The families know who their children are and where they are. The orphanage staff has often met the families and can vouch for them. It just needs to get done.

I had heard earlier tonite that one orphanage was being evacuated to the U.S. but now I am reading that it is stalled. Read about the Bresma orphanage here. Coincidentally, the article I was hoping to cite optimistically turns out to reinforce my point. The process of adoption has torqued out of control holding children back from families who wait.

Can we just.... not? How about if this time we just..... DO.


  1. I have to think that a safe and loving home for one of these poor children is much more important than filling out a million forms! Can't they make an exception this time?

  2. this is something I really didn't know about. wow.

  3. I shake and scratch my head at the inhumanity of this situation. ~Sigh~

  4. There are just no words.

    Thankyou for sharing this - people need to know.

  5. have just wrote what I was only thinking of saying, but havent. Im going to post a link to this post on my blog. You said it so well....

  6. Last I heard (Saturday), the Cdn govt was viewing Haitian orphans at a particular stage in the adoption process as citizens of Cda who are entitled to reunification with their adoptive families. There are duplicates of all the crucial paperwork in Canada, with our govt, and the Cdn govt was promising to approach Haiti for permission to declare the adoptions finalized and bring those kids to their families in Cda. I haven't heard an update on this since late Saturday so don't know if anything other than these promises has happened.

  7. As of MOnday night, CNN is reporting that only 24 children have been allowed out to their adoptive families in the US. They keep reporting things are going to happen, and going to happen etc. and then it changes again and nothing happens. There shouldn't be snags, they should just be getting it done.

  8. I'm new to your blog, but I felt the need to chime in a little here.

    In my area, we are already receiving some of the orphans from Haiti. They had 1 C-130 land Saturday night, 1 on Sunday, 4 Monday and 15 more scheduled throughout the week. They are flying right into the airport that is merely 5 miles from my house. (It's actually a BEAUTIFUL sight.)

    The way DCF explained it to many of the local foster families is that these are adoptees that were already within the adoption process. Florida's DCF will be placing them in local foster care within our county (as down south is FULL) just long enough for their adoptive parents to be located and then they will be placed in their home that the kids were already headed to before the quake. DCF is scrambling to get current FC applications processed (including ours) so that there are enough beds in the area to cover this "respite" time. They are even bending their own rules by exceeding their capacity rules.

    Don't get me wrong, not every person on these planes are adoptees headed to their forever families, but I'm seeing at least a little progress! Praise God!! I pray it continues!

  9. That is FANTASTIC SanitySrchr (great name btw)! I am so happy to hear things are finally rolling! A plane-full went to Pittsburgh earlier today too.

  10. YES. YES. YES. Cut through the red tape. HOW DO WE MAKE THIS HAPPEN?


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