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Harradine welcomes inter-country adoption with China.

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Harradine welcomes Inter-Country Adoption with China


Senator Brian Harradine has welcomed the Senate’s passage today of the Family Law Amendment Bill (No.1) making possible for the first time inter-country adoption between Aus tralia and China.


Senator Harradine first raised the issue of the lack of an agreement on inter-country adoption in the Senate in December 1996 and has been pursuing the issue since that time. Despite good will on the part of China, after six years of negotiations conducted by the Victorian Department of Community Services on behalf of the states, progress had not been made.


It was identified that the main stalemate for the PRC was the status of Chinese children adopted by Australian couples. The Chinese Government had requested Australian law recognise adoption decisions made by its authorities because children would be stateless during the period between the decision and a formal adoption order by a State or Territory court under Australian adoption legislation.


Leader of the Government in the Senate, Robert Hill, had agreed to try to resolve the deadlock.


Senator Harradine thanked his parliamentary colleagues for cross-party support in facilitating the passage of the regulations in the Senate by agreeing to them being given non-controversial status and exemption from the cut-off to allow their passage in the same sitting in which they were introduced.


“I am very happy that at last the stalemate has been resolved and that Australian couples can welcome into their homes some of the tens of thousands abandoned and orphaned Chinese babies desperately in need of loving families,” Senator Harradine said.


Senator Harradine said bureaucratic obstacles which had crippled adoption programs with other countries, such as Peru and Ecuador also needed to be resolved.



Canberra, July 2, 1998

Ph:  2773735