Looking back - looking forward: past, current, and future child adoptions in Australia

Gair, Susan (2018) Looking back - looking forward: past, current, and future child adoptions in Australia. In: Rice, Simon, Day, Andrew, and Briskman, Linda, (eds.) Social Work in the Shadow of the Law - 5th edition. Federation Press, Sydney, NSW, Australia, pp. 36-53.

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By the mid-20th century the adoption of children in Australia typically led to the total severance of ties between a child and their birth parents. Adoptive parents became the legal parents and the adoption narrative was portrayed in positive, 'win-win' terms. Decades on, condemned young mothers began to publicly challenge the accepted adoption narrative and together with the availability of a universal Commonwealth Supporting Mother's Benefit from 1973, growing awareness of the grief and trauma as a result of severed paren¬tal, family and cultural ties, and a growing demand for access to information for birth parents and adult adoptees, substantial changes in adoption policies and practice have resulted. This chapter describes the changes to policy and practice that have occurred in the last 40 years, describes the different types of adoption that are available, and suggests that open adoption (where a child is never lost to the family of origin) could inform the way forward for all types of child adoption. Social workers are identified as being located at the forefront of adoption practice and in lobbying for change.

Item ID: 55220
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-1-76002-161-0
Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2018 05:00
FoR Codes: 44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4410 Sociology > 441009 Sociology of family and relationships @ 50%
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4403 Demography > 440301 Family and household studies @ 50%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940112 Families and Family Services @ 100%
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