Supporting Families and
Children Through Adoption
Minnesota has a strong tradition of adoption, and year after year, we lead the nation in international adoptions. Like so many Minnesotans, I share the belief that every child should have a safe home and a loving family. Because of this belief, and because we have so many Minnesotans who choose to adopt, I have been working hard both in Washington and right here in Minnesota to advocate for adoptive families and children. In particular, my office has worked closely with adoptive Minnesota families to help them bring their children home from countries such as Guatemala, Vietnam, Ethiopia, and Russia. Most recently, following the devastating earthquake in Haiti, Minnesota families who had pending Haitian adoptions began contacting my office for help bringing their children home. Some orphanages had been damaged or destroyed in the quake, and parents were frantic to make sure their kids were safe - and to get them to the United States quickly. Over the course of approximately two months following the earthquake, my office worked with 25 families to help unite 39 Haitian children with their new families in Minnesota.
General Adoption Information
If you are interested in learning more about international adoption, I would encourage you to visit the Department of State adoption website at http://www.adoption.state.gov/. Here, you can check for adoption alerts in specific counties, learn about the adoption process, and even find a Hague-accredited adoption agency.
Already in the adoption process?
If you are already in the process of completing an international adoption and need assistance, my office is available to help. As adoptive parents know, the process is long and can be difficult. Even if parents follow every step exactly as they should, they can still find themselves caught up in government red tape. Whether you are just starting out and working with United States Citizenship Immigration Services, already in-country and completing your adoption at an embassy, or home with your adopted child, my staff may be able to assist you. Please call my office at 612-727-5220 or email Clara Haycraft in my Minnesota office.
Though most adoptions go smoothly, and I am honored to be able to help in any way, I believe we must make some changes to eliminate red tape and bureaucratic obstacles in the adoption process. To do this, I have sponsored and cosponsored several pieces of adoption-related legislation, including:
International Adoption Simplification Act (Keeping Siblings Together in Adoptive Families) Adoptive parents are the best advocates for their children, and Minnesota families brought two important issues to my attention that led me to introduce this legislation. We have a lot of families in Minnesota that do not adopt just one child, but instead, adopt groups of siblings. We can all appreciate how important it is to keep groups of siblings together as a family, but currently, the United States does not allow international adoptions of children ages 16 and older - even if they have younger siblings who are eligible for adoption. My legislation would allow U.S. parents to adopt multiple children who are siblings, even if one of those children is between the ages of 16 and 18. The second important component of this legislation deals with immunization. This legislation would allow children adopted by American parents to enter the United Sates before receiving full immunization as long that their adoptive families guarantee that they will be fully vaccinated within 30 days of their arrival. As parents, we want what is best for our kids, and adoptive parents should be able to have their children immunized in the United States and by pediatricians of their choice. This important bipartisan legislation passed the Senate in August, and I will continue to work for it to become law.
Adoption Fairness Act (Streamlining the Citizenship Certification Process for Adopted Children) Under existing laws, all children adopted by American citizens automatically qualify for American citizenship themselves. However, children whose adoptions are finalized outside the United States and who enter this country on an IR-3 visa receive their certificates of citizenship automatically and free of charge (from USCIS) when they become full citizens under the law. Children whose adoptions are finalized inside the United States and who enter this country on an IR-4 visa do not receive their certificates of citizenship automatically or free of charge when they become full citizens under the law. Instead, they must decide whether to apply for the certificate and pay a large fee. My bill ensures that all children receiving automatic citizenship shall, upon receipt of citizenship, be provided the certificates of citizenship at no cost.
Supporting Adoptive Families Act (Ensuring Adoptive Families Have the Support They Need) In April of this year, a sad story emerged about an American family sending their adopted son back to his home country of Russia. This story sparked debate around the country about international adoption and brought to light the issue of post-adoption support services. Any adoptive family will tell you that as much joy as their children can bring, it's not always easy. To help make sure adoptive families have the support they need, I introduced the Supporting Adoptive Families Act to study, fund, and expand post-adoption support services.
Senator Klobuchar’s Offices
302 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Main Line: 202-224-3244
Main Fax: 202-228-2186
Toll Free: 1-888-224-9043
1200 Washington Avenue South, Room 250
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Main Line: 612-727-5220
Main Fax: 612-727-5223
Toll Free: 1-888-224-9043
1130 1/2 7th Street NW, Room 208
Rochester, MN 55901
Main Line: 507-288-5321
121 4th Street South
Moorhead, MN 56560
Main Line: 218-287-2219
Olcott Plaza, Room 105
820 9th Street North
Virginia, MN 55792
Main Line: 218-741-9690