Adoption UK is working hard to keep the support needs of adoptive families on the political agenda, contributing to two recent parliamentary inquiries. 

Firstly, we provided written evidence to an inquiry looking at the impact of lockdown on those on parental leave. The House of Commons Petition’s Committee is considering whether leave should be extended by three months, with pay, in light of covid-19. Adoption UK supports this proposal and put forward a range of additional recommendations, including a statutory entitlement to adoption pay for self-employed adopters and special guardians. 

Adoption UK’s chief executive, Dr Sue Armstrong Brown also provided oral evidence as part of the inquiryspeaking on behalf of adoptive familiesSue called for better support for newly-placed families during this crisis and beyond, telling MPs: “we need to look at adoptive families with a presumption that they are most likely to need support and ensure that it is provided. This is one of the best investments that we can make”. 

The charity followed this up by submitting evidence to the Education Select Committee which is reviewing the impact of covid-19 on educational and social care services. In its response to this inquiry, Adoption UK called for a three-step approach to helping adoptive families in the months ahead, starting with the urgent extension to adoption leave. 

We also called for increased resources and funding to supported adopted children as they transition back to school in the coming weeks and months. Our recenreport on home learning found that two-thirds of adoptive parents think their child will need extra support during the transition back to school. 

And finally, it called for long-term commitment to the Adoption Support Fund in England which is due to expire next year as well as a funding boost for this year’s budget in anticipation of a spike in demand for therapeutic support among adoptive families.  

Thank you to all those adopters who shared their views and experiences with us so that we can provide valuable evidence to these inquiries. Adoption UK will continue to work constructively with decision-makers in order to deliver meaningful change for adoptive families across the UK through these difficult times.