NSW Minister for Family & Community Services, Gabrielle Upton, today welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement to make adoption of children from overseas easier for Australians.
Minister Upton said the action by the Commonwealth complemented the reforms the NSW Government had made to freeing up adoption processes.
Changes to adoption rules were part of the package of significant child protection reforms passed by Parliament in March, she said.
“The NSW reforms allow for ‘open adoption’, which means adopted children can maintain a connection with their biological parents,” Ms Upton said.
“The Commonwealth action will remove the red tape around providing children from overseas countries a safe and loving home here in Australia.
“These changes supplement reforms here in NSW that acknowledge the greater role open adoption can play in providing vulnerable children with the basic need of a safe home for life.
“The stability and permanency provided by open adoption is widely acknowledged, and is a central component of what we are aiming to achieve here NSW.”
The Commonwealth announcement today comes only a fortnight after the NSW announced it will provide a new transitional support payment to parents adopting children from the out-of-home care system.
The transitional support payment will assist families as they begin their journey with an adopted child, helping to cover expenses in their first three years – from $3,000 in the first year, then decreasing in increments to $1,500 ongoing until the child is eighteen.
Ms Upton said there were too few inter-country adoptions in Australia, because current legislation made it difficult for would-be parents.
“Children and young people need stability and nurture. These change will help prospective parents to provide children with a loving family and a safe home for life.
“Adoption remains an extremely vital option in the care spectrum, and I’m pleased to see the Federal Government recognises this.
“We will work closely with the Commonwealth to see the proposed reforms through,” Ms Upton said.