The Cradle Blog

Change of One-Child Policy Not Likely to Impact International Adoptions

China has decided to lift their one-child policy, making it legally acceptable for families to parent two children. One of the first questions asked by many today was "What will happen to international adoptions?" 

The short answer: probably not much impact, if any at all.

Although you may think that China's one-child policy has been a driving force behind adoption, in recent years there are other factors at play. In fact, 74% fewer children were placed into the US than 2005 (the peak level of international adoptions from China).

Since 2005, the Chinese government has focused increasing efforts on placing children in need of homes within China. Also, the country as a whole is increasingly affluent, increasing indiviual families' ability to parent their children. These are some of the more important factors that have lead to a dramatic decrease in placements from China in recent years. 

Today, most of the children being adopted from China into the US are older than infants and many have identified medical needs. It is highly unlikely that this particular policy change in China will have any measurable impact on this number.

As far as the one-child policy is concerned, as a child welfare organization, we at The Cradle applaud any effort to help more children remain in their countries and families of origin.