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311 persons waiting to adopt children in state care, some applications date back to 1999

Published:Thursday | January 16, 2014 | 10:22 AM

KINGSTON, Jamaica:

The Child Development Agency (CDA) and the Adoption Board say they are working overtime to clear the backlog of adoption applications this year.




Chairman of the Adoption Board, Tricia Sutherland, says there are some 311 requests awaiting matches, some dating as far back as 1999.



Sutherland says the CDA and the Adoption Board have agreed that applicants who have been on the waiting list the longest will be given preference.



She noted that the adoption procedure in Jamaica is often considered long, but she emphasised that the investigations and paperwork involved is necessary and is in the best interest of the child.



For her part, Youth and Culture Minister, Lisa Hanna disclosed that there are 257 children under the age of eight in state care.



Hanna said of that number, about 140 are between the ages of zero to three.



She pointed out that 98 per cent of the adoption requests are for children three years old and younger.



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