Australian adoption numbers declined in 2014-15

February 8 2016

Adoptions Australia 2014–15 (Child Welfare Series No 62) was released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare just before Christmas 2015.

This is a technical report rather than a policy document but the following are some points of interest:

  • There were 14 ‘intercountry adoptions’ in SA in 2014/15 (compared to the 2004-05 high of 74)
  • Two ‘local adoptions’ were finalised in SA in 2013-14 (compared to the 2003-04 high of six) One of the two local adoptions was a known child adoption.
  • ‘Adoption numbers continued to decline In 2014–15, 292 adoptions were recorded as finalised. This is the lowest annual number of adoptions on record, and is a fall of 8% from the 317 adoptions in 2013–14, and of 74% from the 1,142 adoptions 25 years earlier, in 1990–91. The decline over the past decade has been driven primarily by intercountry adoptions, which fell to 83 in 2014–15 from 421 in 2005–06.’
  • ‘Almost one-third of all adoptions were carer adoptions. While adoption numbers overall have declined over time, known child adoptions by carers are increasing. In 2014–15, carers, such as foster parents, adopted 94 children, the highest number at any point in the previous decade—more than four times the 21 adoptions in 2005–06. Carer adoptions comprised almost one-third (32%) of all finalised adoptions in 2014–15.’
  • The SA overview section is on pages 76 to 77, although the data shown above is drawn from several places in the report.
  • Page 46 has a brief section on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and adoption

[This post is drawn from internal Guardian’s Office internal policy briefings. It is supplied for information only and should not be taken to represent or imply a policy position. 

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