FAMILY - Adoption


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This is a sample for the HSC Legal Studies Family package by HSC Apps. Just click Download and it's all yours to do what you want with it! Order from June 7th at Even if you don't buy the package, please give this to your students in case it helps them understand the main issues with adoption in NSW.

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FAMILY - Adoption

  1. 1. ADOPTIONAdoption occurs when a couple (orindividual person) legally takesanother couple’s child as theirown.For this to happen, the biologicalparents have to legally renounce(give up) their rights as the ‘legal’parents of the child and giveconsent (allow) for the child to beadopted by another couple.The non-biological couple/personwould then become the legalparents of the child.
  2. 2. ADOPTIONAdoption is a STATE MATTER – Every State has different laws about it.The State law covering it in NSW is:The Adoption Act 2000 (NSW)The people allowed to adopt are:Married couples (including ATSI customary law marriages) – they must have beentogether for two years (Adoption Amendment Act 2008 (NSW))De facto couples together more than 2 years (including same sex couples – AdoptionAmendment (Same Sex Couples) Act 2010)Single applicants (straight OR gay)The adoptive parent/s must be:Over 21MALES: 18 years or more older than the kidFEMALES: 16 years or more older than the kid
  3. 3. ADOPTION40 years ago, almost 10,000 adoptions occurred in Australia.In 2011-12, only 333 children were adopted in Australia.Why has the number dropped?- Effective birth control- IVF- The 4 year average wait to adopt a child from overseas (due topaperwork and procedures)Almost half the adoptions were from overseas (most the Philippines &South Korea).‘Adoptions Plunge as red tape adds to delay of getting a child’SMH (2013)
  4. 4. ADOPTIONThe NSW government is aiming to increase adoption instead of keepingkids in long term foster care when their parents aren’t able to care forthem.This is in response to having 18,000 kids in NSW in foster care (whichdoesn’t give the kids a permanent home)Children to get families, not foster care, SMH (2012)
  5. 5. ADOPTIONSame-sex couples being allowed to adopt is only a recent law reform(Adoption Amendment (Same Sex Couples) Act 2010). The Members ofParliament were given a ‘conscience vote’ (meaning that they were notinstructed by their Party leaders to vote one way or the other) – ‘MPsget conscience vote on gay adoption’, ABC News, 2010.The law was passed only after faith-based adoption agencies (e.g.CatholicCare Adoption Services) were given the right to refuse same-sex couples the right to adopt.Leader of the Christian Democrats, Fred Nile, tried torepeal the law to stop gay couples from adopting(Adoption Amendment (Same Sex Couples Repeal) BILL2011). It failed, THANK GOD.
  6. 6. ADOPTIONThere is a pretty serious ethical issue when itcomes to intercountry adoption – what ifthey’re stolen from their parents? Ithappened to a few couples from Canberraback in the 90s (‘Govt. reveals ACT couplescaught up in Adoption Scams’ – ABC News(2009)).Intercountry adoptions are governed by the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption (amultilateral treaty), as well as bilateral treaties with individual countries.In NSW: Parents must apply through the Dept. of Community Services for an intercountryadoption.‘Private’ adoption (going overseas and “getting” a baby) is only allowed if the adoptive parentshave been living in the other country for at least 12 months and if the authorities in the othercountry approve of the child being brought to live in Australia (i.e. you can’t go on a holiday andcome back with an adopted child)
  7. 7. ADOPTIONForced AdoptionAbout 150,000 Australian babies bornbetween the 1950s and 1970s wereforcibly taken with the support of thegovernment from their (mostly youngand single) mothers.The state AND federal governmentshave now officially apologised.OFarrell says sorry for forcedadoptions, SMH (2012)Gillard delivers apology to victims offorced adoption, ABC News (2013)