Below is a copy of Press Release 2, a practice activity from my ‘Writing for a Communication Career’ class.
Below is a copy of Press Release 1, a practice activity from my ‘Writing for a Communication Career’ class.
Family’s International Adoption Story Showcases Flawed System
REXBURG, Idaho—“It was frustrating.” “I don’t know.” “It made no sense.” These were some of the phrases that Lori Prince kept using as she recounted her experience with international adoption.
Confusion seems to be the name of the game when it comes to international adoption, which may be why the number of international adoptions in the US fell 50 percent from 2004 to 2011.
The Prince family started on their journey of adopting their new son Ignacio in June 2013 and finished this Sept. While there story is unique in many ways—In large part due to the fact that Ignacio is 16 and from Ecuador—but their story mirrors the struggle most families experience when deciding to adopt internationally.
The Prince’s gave up their Christmas in 2012 to travel to Ecuador and do philanthropic work at an orphanage owned by the local non-profit, Dando Amor. This is the kind of poster family that the Prince’s are: The perfect unlikely candidates for an adoptive family. It was there that they met and became enamored by Ignacio, a kind and faith filled young man that has a wonderful sense of humor.
When they began the process of adopting Ignacio, they found that it would be far more difficult than they’d ever imagined, and so it goes with so many families across the country.
“I kind of thought, do these people even realize that this is absolutely ridiculous?” Prince asked. “Do they know how many kids are here that are orphaned and how many people there are that would do this but they can’t afford it or they make it too hard?”
The trials range from the cost of adoption, the time it can take and the bureaucratic nightmare that has been created from such international legislation as the Hague Convention.
The Child Welfare Information Gateway sites that inter-country adoptions generally cost $15,000 – $30,000—The State department reports that the highest country’s average is South Africa at $160,217. But for many families, the prices soar far higher. The average sits at $28,000.
Not only are the prices high, but an understanding of where the money goes is limited at best. The Princes experienced $10,000 ‘paper processing fee’. Prices do vary between countries but two thirds of their costs were incurred through the United States government.
“I think one of the first things I would want to know is, where is all this money going that you’re paying for?” Prince asked. “You can’t put a price on someone’s life but who are we paying and what is it going toward? I don’t understand. There’s so many people that have asked, ‘how much has this cost because I would very much consider doing this?’ And then they found out the cost and they just said, ‘there’s no way we could do that. There’s no way we can afford that’.”
To Lori’s point about how many children are in need of a home worldwide, the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute reports that, “There are 17,900,000 orphans who have lost both parents and are living in orphanages or on the streets and lack the care and attention required for healthy development. These children are at risk for disease, malnutrition, and death.”
Another barrier that bars many families from adopting internationally is the time it can take.
Rexburg Police Department marked vehicle speeds past citizens Thursday on Main Street. While most expect police to be the face of lawfulness, one citizen recalls being passed by a marked vehicle going ‘fast enough to receive a ticket themselves’. While the act of speeding (within reason) is a common offense, and certainly not something that would land someone in the slammer, the Rexburg resident was frustrated because she had previously been pulled over for going less than five miles above the speed limit. As locals and students alike can attest, RPD can be less than understanding about similar infractions. Rexburg police are notorious for their fluctuating degrees of allowance in speed trapping. The event occurred the same day that the Madison County Sheriff’s Office received an award for their fatality free traffic years in 2012 and 2013. MCSO went on to post on their Facebook that each such fatality would likely cost the community 1.5 million dollars each. While these accomplishments should be a source of pride for Rexburg, it does not negate the need to further hold those accountable who choose to endanger others for breaking the established speed limits, especially when those people are the ones enforcing the rules. Perhaps the offense was not dire enough to endanger anyone’s lives but it does raise a valid question of double standards for the community and their law enforcement. The citizen says she does not intend to take further action to hold the officer accountable but encourages others to consider the double standard that can take place in this small town.