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Anger as Government bans Vietnam adoptions

By Fiachra O Cionnaith

Irish Examiner, Friday, January 15, 2010

THE Government has "slammed the door in the face" of young couples attempting to adopt by suspending services from Vietnam.

Reacting to Minister for Children Barry Andrews’s decision to prevent adoptions from the Asian country, Irish group Helping Hands claimed the move would destroy countless people’s hopes to start a family.

"We would strongly recommend that the Irish Government engage with the rest of the international community to help in improving adoption conditions in Vietnam.

"Currently the door has simply been slammed in the face of helpless young Vietnamese children who are in need of loving and caring families," warned the group’s chief executive, Sharon O Driscoll.

"Our numerous requests to meet with government leaders to discuss the situation, particularly Minister for Children Barry Andrews, have been mystifyingly dodged or refused," she added.

The comment came after the Mr Andrews moved to temporarily ban all adoptions from Vietnam until a full review is carried out.

In November, Helping Hands denied reports it was under investigation by the Adoption Board over fees it charged people to adopt from Vietnam.

It followed a Unicef’s International Social Services report, which was critical of the make-up of the agency’s fee of $11,100 (€7,286), of which $9,000 consists of "humanitarian aid". 

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“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage, to know who we are and where we have come from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning . . . and the most disquieting loneliness." 

Alex Haley, Author of Roots 





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