March 12, 2012

Dear CCA: Did you know ...

I just got back from an absolutely wonderful trip to the west coast, where I visited with KAAN friends and spent some quality time with The Girl, who is out west at college.  I did all kinds of old people stuff: visited and knit with friends, went out to dinner, had a leisurely drive up the Pacific Coast Highway, shopped with The Girl and her roommate - a totally relaxing time.

I'm pleased to say that I came back rejuvenated enough to jump right into the project Korean Focus is sponsoring to raise awareness around intercountry adoptee deportation and citizenship issues (full disclosure: I'm a long-time volunteer and Board member, but speak here for myself, not for the organization).  KF sponsored a petition back in the fall following an urgent action by a number of individuals and organizations on behalf of adopted Koreans who were deported, facing deportation or exiled due to citzenship-related legal issues. The petition closed when it hit 1500 signatures to allow the petition to stop the deportation of Russell Green (which is sponsored by AdopSource and others as the Justice for Adoptees Coalition) to move forward.

Korean Focus committed to sending a hard copy of the petition and signatures to every member of the CCA to remind them of their responsibility to correct this egregious wrong.  I volunteered to do the mailing, which is ready to roll: the petition and signatures are printed, the cover letter is signed and the envelopes are ready to be stuffed and and sent. As responses come in, KF will post them on its website.

I'm really curious if any CCA legislators will feign ignorance of the deportation issue. It is the result of an egregious legislative failure, so I have lately been wondering if part of the problem is that legislators just don't know about it. It doesn't hit the news too often, and you have to dig to get details, so I think it's within the realm of possibility that they simply don't know that this is happening; not a comforting thought about the people who are supposed to be driving legislative action related to adoption, but better than if they do know about it and still are doing nothing. It will be interesting to see what kind of response, if any, results from this effort.  I hope the legislators are humble enough to admit they are unaware of the issue, or if aware, are guilty of taking no action. I will not, however, be holding my breath.

I also hope to see more and more intercountry adoption organizations - grassroots groups, lobbies, adoption agencies, everyone - speak out more about this issue. It is simply time for this nonsense to end.