If you believe that every child around the world deserves the opportunity to thrive in a loving, permanent family, we need your voice right away!
This week, Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) plan to introduce the Vulnerable Children and Families Act of 2016 which means today is Advocacy Day! Call your Senators and ask them to co-sponsor this important bill right away.
So how will this bill help kids around the world living outside of family care?
The short answer? By strengthening and clarifying the roles of the State Department and other federal government offices as they relate to global child welfare and intercountry adoption activities.
As the world's orphan population continues to grow, the Vulnerable Children and Families Act will help update the role of the U.S. government to better serve the needs of today's most vulnerable children.
What can I do to help?
Step 1: Call the U.S. Capitol at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak to your Senate office.
Step 2: Introduce yourself as a constituent and ask to speak to someone who deals with global child welfare and intercountry adoption issues.
Step 3: Ask your Senator to co-sponsor the Vulnerable Children and Families Act! This bill will:
- Re-enforce Congress’s and the American people’s commitment to intercountry adoption when this is the appropriate option for a child to have a family.
- Re-prioritize and affirm the U.S. Department of State’s responsibility to be better advocates for this population of vulnerable children, and will open doors of opportunity for them to be adopted by qualified American citizens.
- Provide the U.S. Department of State mission-specific instructions regarding their role in advancing the cause of intercountry adoption when no other domestic solution is available for a child to have a family, including establishing priorities that seem inherent in appropriate Hague Convention implementation.
- Create better communications between several U.S. Government offices charged with carrying out various international child welfare activities and services, among them domestic and intercountry adoption options – and will create, in our opinion, more accountability and cooperation between the U.S. Department of State, other government offices, and the U.S. Congress.
Step 4: But what about funding? Well, since, the legislation is nearly all affirmative and mission-specific, it only requires a reallocation of existing resources without significant costs.
Step 5: Tell the staffer to contact the office of either Senator Blunt or Klobuchar to sign on.
Step 6: Ask for the staffer's email address so that you can send more details in a follow-up email. A sample email is below!
Sample Follow-Up Email
Dear [name of the international adoption staffer],
Thanks for taking my call today! I hope Senator XYZ will co-sponsor the Vulnerable Children and Families Act of 2016. This bill is important to me because it will improve the United States' ability to serve our nation's current future adoptive families, as well as the millions of vulnerable children around the world living outside of family care.
Join Senators Blunt and Klobuchar in this important effort.
Please contact Lauren_McCormack@blunt.senate.gov in Sen. Blunt's office or Lindsey in Sen. Klobuchar's office to become a co-sponsor.
Thanks for supporting children and families and let me know if you have any questions!