Senators Wicker, Klobuchar Introduce Legislation to Make Adoption Process More Accessible

Senators Introduce Voluntary Limited Accreditation for Adoption Services Act

February 5, 2024

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., introduced legislation to cut through the federal government’s existing bureaucratic red tape and expand adoption options for Mississippians.

“We should be making it easier for adoptive parents to welcome children into their homes. Unfortunately, bureaucratic red tape makes the process difficult for adoption agencies and minimizes opportunities for Mississippians to pursue,” Senator Wicker said. “The one-size-fits-all accreditation standard doesn’t work. Agencies can navigate different paths to reach the same outcome. Our bill reverses course, is pro-family, and puts more children in loving homes.”

“Local adoption agencies help children around the world find the loving homes they deserve. But too often, families struggle to find accredited adoption service providers to assist them through the process,” Senator Klobuchar said. “By creating a new pathway for providers that offer critical services like background and home studies, our bipartisan legislation ensures that families have trusted local agencies to help them navigate the adoption process and give children safe, stable homes.”

Current federal government regulations require any organization wishing to provide international adoption services to be accredited under a single standard. This forces adoption agencies to jump through additional, unnecessary accreditations to keep their doors open.

The “Voluntary Limited Accreditation for Adoption Services Act” would provide adoption agencies the flexibility and multiple avenues they can pursue to receive the necessary accreditation.

Senators Wicker and Klobuchar’s bill would modify the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 to allow for a voluntary limited accreditation for adoption agencies for the following services:

  • Performing a background study on a child in an outgoing case and reporting on such a study.
  • Performing a home study on the prospective adoptive parent(s) in an incoming case and reporting on such a study.
  • Monitoring a case after a child has been placed with prospective adoptive parent(s) until final adoption, including preparing post-placement reports.

The full text of the legislation can be found here.