Three agencies lose credentials for adoptions

MOSCOW – Three U.S.-based adoption agencies have been stripped of accreditation after they failed to monitor the children’s well-being in their adoptive families, the Education Ministry said Friday.

Officials revoked the licenses of Adoption Services Associates and Los Ninos International Adoption Center, both based in Texas, and California-based ACCEPT on Monday, the ministry said, citing “systematic violation of obligations to control the children’s quality of life in the adoptive families.”

The decision comes a week after prosecutors accused dozens of foreign adoption agencies of operating with expired licenses and violating other regulations.

Rosana Erichsen, executive director of the Los Ninos International Adoption Center, said her agency had not been notified of the revocation. She admitted, however, that the firm, which has been operating in Russia for several years, had not always submitted the necessary reports on time.

“This is the first year they are being very strict with post-placement reports,” Erichsen said.

Boris Altshuler, director of the advocacy group Right of the Child, said the revocations appeared to be normal government oversight. But he condemned what he called a campaign by other officials and lawmakers to ban foreign adoptions altogether.

About 10,000 Russian children are adopted each year by foreign families, with about half going to the United States.


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