Transracial Adoptions: Navigating the Racial Divide
Rooks, Ryan Lewis
Racial discourse in the U.S. remains a harbinger and contributor to the rising inequality facing minority children in transracial adoptions that affects development of a positive racial and ethnic identity. Scholars have long studied the effects of racial discrimination in the placement of minority children with White parents while comparing its effects with contemporary racial struggles. Studies demonstrate that the outcomes to racial and ethnic identities of the adoptee are dependent on a variety of factors including social structure and the homogeneity of the surrounding community. Advocates for transracial adoption assert that placing a child in a permanent home, regardless of race, is acting in the child’s best interest. Opponents argue transracial adoption removes children from their race and culture while failing the child in providing proper defense mechanisms to succeed in a systemically racist society. Continued inequities face the placement of minority children that is contrary to the implementation of progressive policies and increased awareness to the impacts of transracial adoptions. An analysis of previous scholarly studies combined with a review of updated policies reveals that the existing racial divide in society continues to influence the myriad of stakeholders within the transracial adoption process. This analysis also proposes an outline for future studies with the intent to establish a framework to successfully navigate the complexity of transracial adoption and provide increased support to minority children while fostering the development of positive racial identity.
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