Hague|US Embassy in Hanoi

Press Release: Special Advisor for Children’s Issues Ambassador Susan Jacobs Visits Vietnam

From the Embassy of the United States, Hanoi:

HANOI, November 5, 2012 – Special Advisor for Children’s Issues Ambassador Susan Jacobs visited Vietnam October 30 – 31 as part of a larger trip to the region to discuss child protection systems and inter-country adoptions with officials from several countries.  

Intercountry adoption between the United States and Vietnam remains suspended since 2008. Over the last 3 years, the Government of Vietnam has strengthened its commitment to reforming its adoption system.  A new adoption law, implementing decree and related circulars have been passed and are being implemented.  The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-country Adoption entered into force in Vietnam on February 1, 2012.  On September 7, 2012 the Prime Minister of Vietnam approved the three-year National Project  designed to implement the Hague Adoption Convention.  The United States welcomes Vietnam’s efforts to enhance its child welfare system and, through a grant from the United States Agency for International Development, has supported a program called “Strengthening Legislation and Monitoring Systems for Child Adoption” which was recently extended through December 2013.  

During her trip to Vietnam, Ambassador Jacobs met with GVN officials to discuss Vietnam’s current progress on adoption reform to support the Hague Adoption Convention and improve child welfare.  She met with other adoption stakeholders to discuss their perspectives and how the United States can further support Vietnam’s efforts.



I am a mom to a biological son, a daughter adopted from Vietnam, and a son adopted domestically. I became interested in transparency in adoption after we brought our daughter home from Phu Tho, Vietnam, in March 2007. My husband and I were very naive when we began the international adoption process. We thought that all agencies, facilitators, orphanage directors, etc. had the best interests of the orphaned children at heart. Sadly, we learned that adoption is a “business” and that corruption can be widespread. We were bothered by things we saw in-country, and further disappointed by things we learned about our agency and the adoption system in Vietnam once we returned home. I do believe that ethical adoptions are possible, and I hope that by speaking out we can bring about reforms that will allow those children who are truly orphans to find their forever families. I also maintain a personal blog: http://myminivanrocks.wordpress.com/.

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