Wednesday, April 13, 2011

This and that

We've been on the waiting list about a month now. Not a whole lot to report, but there have been a few updates from our agency and Ethiopia. This is for family and friends who don't live and breathe adoption - everyone in the adoption community already knows this stuff.
  • The slowdown in cases processed in Ethiopia is confirmed, but no one knows how long it will last. 
  • We have been told to expect "significant delays" in the wait between a referral and clearance by the Ethiopian courts. As of now the wait for a referral hasn't changed. No clue what a significant delay will be. Right now the wait between referral and court is 3-7 months. Whatever the increased time is, it means additional time that our child will be living in an orphanage.
  • The official reason for the slowdown is still "increased scrutiny," which is good. However, cases from before the slowdown are being expedited to clear the backlog, so it seems the increased scrutiny is still to come. I'm eager to hear what additional procedures will be implemented.
  • The U.S. embassy and USCIS are considering implementation of a pre-approval for issuing a visa. This would be good. Right now a case passes the Ethiopian court, the adoptive parents become the legal parents, and THEN the case goes to the U.S. embassy. This creates a lot of pressure on the embassy to approve the case - they know that if they don't, the parents will be stuck in limbo with a child that is legally theirs but cannot come to the United States. With pre-approval, or with cases being processed simultaneously by Ethiopia and the U.S., there would not be that pressure to approve a less-than-valid case.
  • Our agency has stopped accepting applications for children under the age of 3. They say the waiting list is already long enough and they don't need more people waiting. This doesn't affect anyone already in the process.
That's all we know right now.
Have a super evening!


  1. Not too bad. I cannot wait to see how things work out for you!

  2. Didn't know they stopped accepting applications for kids under three, thanks for the update!

  3. I didn't know they stopped accepting applications either, where did you find this out?

  4. "Our agency has stopped accepting applications for children under the age of 3. They say the waiting list is already long enough and they don't need more people waiting."

    This seems like a real ethical move on their part. I am not sure all agencies would do this.

  5. The weekly update said they were considering it, and on the conference call on Wednesday they said it's "a decision we have made" that is "going to be announced very shortly."

  6. Wow, I didn't know WHFC made this change. I think it's for the best; I wonder if other agencies will follow suit if their Waiting Lists are getting long. Thanks for the update!

  7. Hello and thanks for your blog and all the information - your April post reflects what we learned here in Switzerland by the end of May (until then it was all rumours). Your reflections on the motivations for the changes helped us understand how justified these are - even though it's a slap in the face for the cildren and adopting parents in the midst of the process.
    We're in a similar situation of having to wait but actually, after doing some maths, we're not sure whether that's the best we can do. If they are reducing the number of adoptions by 90%, doesn't that mean waiting time will be ten times as high? Sorry to be blunt about this, but doesn't this also imply that children matched already with adopting parents will have to wait years in childcare? Again, I'm not trying to find fault with or blame the authorities, we're just pondering what alternatives there are - but haven't come to any conclusions yet...