§ Sir Fergus Montgomery
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is his policy with regard to trans-racial adoptions for children in the care of local authorities; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mrs. Currie
In all decisions relating to the adoption of a child courts and adoption agencies, whether local authorities or voluntary societies, are required to give first consideration to the need to safeguard and promote that child's welfare throughout childhood and to take account of the child's wishes and feelings. Within this legal framework the choice of prospective adopters is the statutory responsibility of agencies and a matter of professional judgment. The child's needs arising from his ethnic, cultural and religious origins and identity are important factors in decisions about adoption placements and we welcome the efforts which are being made by statutory and voluntary agencies to recruit prospective adopters from ethnic minority groups.