The Guardian 31 March 2016
The government’s new vision for adoption is to be welcomed, but Nicky Morgan should cut out the divisive rhetoric.
The education secretary, Nicky Morgan, unveiling the new adoption strategy over the Easter weekend, said: “We cannot stand by while children spend months in care waiting for their new family, when loving parents are available.” But children in foster care are not “waiting” for a loving family: they are in one.
Foster care isn’t a substandard second-best to adoption, it is the permanence option for 75% of children in the care system. It offers stability, consistency, care and love and delivers fantastic outcomes for children. Sadly, I suspect some bright young thing cynically judges that contrasting loving adopters with the evil care system plays well with the party base. Such reductive thinking disheartens the tens of thousands of foster carers who look after more than 50,000 of the UK’s most vulnerable children and do a fantastic job.