Another Broken System: How the Adoption System in the United States Is Keeping Families Apart

  •  Yvonne Li    


At its best, the adoption system brings families together and gives children a chance at a happy and healthy life; however, as it turns out, like many other systems in the United States, the adoption system is entrenched with systemic racism that may negatively impact a child’s life. In this paper, I examine the following questions: In what ways does the adoption process favor one race over the other? Who is imagined as the parent and the child in a transracial adoption? What has the public’s response been when the parent is a person of color? I first look at scholarship related to transracial adoptions and the arguments around whether transracial adoptions are beneficial for the children. I discuss some deeply rooted problems in transracial adoptions that may have a long term impact on a child’s life. I then outline my research methods, and finally, I discuss the results of my research. Ultimately, I argue that the adoption system, a system that is supposed to bring families together, is unintentionally keeping families apart with its regulations. In addition, I look into how some of the racist undertones in adoption policies have bled into what people imagine a family should look like.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-517X
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-5188
  • Started: 2012
  • Frequency: semiannual

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