What is Family Preservation?

Family Preservation is about providing the resources needed to prevent unnecessary, permanent family separations, services such as affordable medical care, child care, substance abuse treatment.

Family Preservation is about treating every mother and father equally and not judging any as unfit based on age, marital, or financial status. It's about not exploiting any one's weaknesses in order to commodify their child to meet a demand.
"Open adoption and open records are important byways. But they are not the most compelling route. Family preservation is." Dr. Randolph Severson, The Soul of Family Preservation
"Open adoption, which we helped pioneer, is not a solution to the problems inherent in adoption. Without legal sanction, open adoption is an unenforceable agreement at the whim of the adoptive parents. Instead, we propose a form of guardianship adoption that we believe would be in the best interests of all concerned, with special benefits for the adoptee for it would decrease the abandonment/rejection issue and permit the child to know the birthparents as real people who cared about him but could not raise him. " Annette Baran and Reuben Pannor, A Time for Sweeping Change, CUB 1991
"Children have rights. These rights are laid down essentially in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and in the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children. Children and their biological parents have a right to respect for their family life." Adoption:at what cost? 2007 Terre des hommes – child relief, Lausanne, Switzerland

"Every child has the right to know and be cared for by his or her own parents, whenever possible. UNICEF believes that families needing support to care for their children should receive it."

The Uniform Adoption Act calls for the protection of "minor children against unnecessary separation from their birth parents."

“Regrettably, in many cases, the emphasis has changed from the desire to provide a needy child with a home, to that of providing a needy parent with a child. As a result, a whole industry has grown, generating millions of dollars of revenues each year . . .”
United Nations, Commission on Human Rights, 2003.
 Article 7, U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child"The child shall be registered immediately after birth and shall have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and. as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents."

Article 8
"Where a child is illegally deprived of some or all of the elements of his or her identity, States Parties shall provide appropriate assistance and protection, with a view to re-establishing speedily his or her identity."

Article 9
"States Parties shall respect the right of the child who is separated from one or both parents to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents on a regular basis, except if it is contrary to the child's best interests."

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (http://www.un.org/Overview/rights.html).
They include:
• Article 12. - No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, FAMILY, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.
• Article 16(3) - The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.
• Article 25(1) - Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control. (2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.


Every child born has an inalienable right to remain safely with the mother and/or father who conceived and/or bore him/her, as well as to know any other genetic/DNA contributors.

Every expectant mother has the right to protect, care for and maintain her bond with her child and deserves every possible opportunity, resource, option, and help to do so.

Every mother and father, regardless of age, race, marital status, finances, or physical disadvantage has the right to parent their child above any others. This connection should not be severed without due cause for the protection and safety of the child, and only after all means of addressing the problems of the family unit have been exhausted.

Placing a child in the care of adults to whom the child is not related is a last resort option to be used only when there are no extended family members able and willing to provide care for the child related to them. If and when such care is necessary, the child requiring such care should be immediately appointed a court-appointed guardian ad litem to ensure the best interest of the child is placed at the forefront of identifying appropriate substitute family care.

It is not in best interest of children placed with non-family members to be deprived of their names or their connection with their original family. They should be allowed unlimited visitation and contact with all blood relatives, with necessary supervision to prevent harm when deemed by the court as necessary. Depriving a child access to visitation with any blood relatives should be punishable by law.

Mothers and fathers in crisis need to receive objective family-centered option counseling and all the resources, referrals, and support needed to remain as an intact family and protected from fraud, coercion and exploitation for the purpose of separating them from their child.

Mothers and fathers of a child requiring substitute care should be provided separate legal counsel to be fully aware of their rights and recourse. Such counsel should be paid for by a tax or fee paid into a general fund and not directly from substitute guardian to the child's parent.

Children are not commodities, and no profit should be made by any individuals or agencies involved in necessary custodial placements for children in need.

No policies that promote or encourage the separation or abandonment of parent a child are consistent with a moral culture.

Current adoption practice focuses on filling the demands of paying clients who seek infants, instead of focusing on the best interest of vulnerable children. The privatization of American infant adoption has turned what once was a social institution for providing care of orphans and children who have no parents - into a multi-billion dollar unregulated industry run by untrained, unlicensed, unregulated practitioner/baby brokers and intermediaries whose livelihood is dependent on the redistribution of children with non-related strangers.

Worldwide 90% of children in orphanages are NOT orphans, but have family who visit and hope to be reunited, as was was the case with both children adopted by Madonna. "Rescuing" children through international adoption, one by one, does nothing to ameliorate the poverty of their families, their village or their nation. Neither does it help reduce the number of children in American foster care.

Family Preservation does NOT advocate:
  • forcing any mother who does not want her child to parent said child.
  • allowing children to remain in abusive or severely neglectful homes or dangerous situations

Mirah Riben

RussiaToday Apr 29, 2010 on Russian Adoption Freeze

Russi Today: America television Interview 4/16/10 Regarding the Return of Artyem, 7, to Russia alone

RT: Russia-America TV Interview 3/10

Korean Birthmothers Protest to End Adoption

Motherhood, Adoption, Surrender, & Loss

Who Am I?

Bitter Winds

Adoption and Truth Video

Adoption Truth

Birthparents Never Forget