Haiti Slows Adoptions Amid Trafficking Fears

Prime minister will now personally approve transfer of any child
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 27, 2010 3:52 PM CST
A demonstration in support of Haitian orphans, in Paris.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Haiti is dramatically slowing airlifts and adoption proceedings for Haitian orphans out of fear of human trafficking. Adoptions were fast-tracked after the recent quake to make room in orphanages, but now the government is concerned that children with living family may be sent abroad or scooped up by traffickers and sold into slavery in the chaos. Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive says he will now personally approve all adoptions.

Bellerive tells the Miami Herald that the order will not stop all proceedings, and that he has “signed three specific authorizations of adoption lists that were in the adoption process with people who are known for their services with children.” Still, orphanage workers in Haiti got the message. One spirited out 50 children early Monday after the US Embassy told her airlifts were about to come “to a screeching halt.” “We were advised to get the children out of their beds, get them dressed and load them into trucks,” she says.

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