the same race and culture as in the child's best interest. The value of ensuring that African-American children learn the whole and complete sum of who they are, as members of a distinct group, is the issue.
The following statement by the NABSW ( 1994, p. 5) provides a succinct summation of the importance of this issue.
Culture is the single most important filter through which we see the world. It is through culture that we assign the meaning to circumstances, situations, and experiences in our world--it is one's world view. In the African-American community, culture is the sum total of our historical experience. This includes the impact of and survival strategies developed from the experience of slavery and racism in America."
Transracial adoptions continue, as does the debate. Is it time, perhaps, to broaden the debate on transracial adoption from the issue of what is "in the child's best interest" to encompass the compelling issue of who gets to define what is "in the child's best interest?"
Andujo E. ( 1988). "Ethnic Identity of transethnically adopted Hispanic adolescents." Social Work, 33, 531-535.
Bagley C. ( 1993). "Transracial adoption in Britain: a follow-up study with policy considerations." Child Welfare, 73 (3), 285-299.
Chestang L. ( 1972). "The dilemma of biracial adoption." Social Work 17 (3), 100- 115.
Child Welfare League of America. ( 1968). Standards for Adoptive Practice. New York: CWLA.
Child Welfare League of America. ( 1973). Standards for Adoptive Practice. New York: CWLA.
Child Welfare League of America. ( 1978). Standards for Adoptive Practice. New York: CWLA.
Child Welfare League of America. ( 1988). Standards for Adoptive Practice. Washington, DC: CWLA.
Child Welfare League of America. ( 1995). Multiethnic Placement Act of 1994, Briefing Paper. Washington, DC: CWLA.
Gray S. & Nybell L. ( 1990). "Issues in African-American family preservation." Child Welfare, 69 (6), 513-523.
Grow L. & Shapiro D. ( 1974). Black Children, White Parents: A Study of Transracial Adoption. Washington, DC: CWLA.
Hayes P. ( 1993). "Transracial adoption: politics and ideology." Child Welfare 72 (3), 301-310.
Helwig A. & Ruthven D. ( 1990). "Psychological ramifications of adoption and implications for counseling." Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 12 ( 1), 24-37.
Johnson P., Shireman J. & Watson K. ( 1987). "Transracial adoption and the development of black identity at age eight." Child Welfare, 66 (1), 45-55.