Letter to Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State - Blunt, Klobuchar Urge Administration to Ensure Intercountry Adoptions Process in Safe and Timely Manner During Coronavirus Pandemic
Dear Secretary Pompeo:
We write to urge the Department of State (DOS) to use all available resources to ensure that intercountry adoptions proceed in a safe and timely manner during the coronavirus pandemic. We also write to ask what steps the Department is taking to issue visas for intercountry adoptions that have been finalized and to ensure the safe return of American families stranded abroad while completing these adoptions.
Last month, DOS suspended routine visa services and announced that limited U.S. Embassy and consulate resources as well as foreign government policies could affect the process for issuing visas for intercountry adoptions. We understand that there are numerous families overseas waiting for their visas to be issued for their adopted children before they can return home. We are concerned that these changes could leave families stranded overseas and could exacerbate already long processing times for intercountry adoptions. These delays could also lengthen stays in foreign countries and prevent adoptive children from critical time with their families in the United States.
It is essential that families waiting abroad are able to safely return to the United States as soon as possible, and we ask that you provide information on the Department's plans to issue visas for intercountry adoptions of children and to ensure the safe return of American families currently abroad attempting to complete an adoption. Additionally, we respectfully request that you let us know what steps are being taken to provide detailed and consistent communications to families attempting to complete an intercountry adoption.
Thank you for your attention to this issue, and we look forward to your response.