14 times as many prospective parents as adoption candidates

There are fourteen times more couples in Ireland looking to adopt children, than the number of children available for adoption.

The overall issue of adoption in Ireland will be discussed at the Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children today.

Members will be addressed by groups including the Adoption Rights Alliance and the Children's Rights Alliance.

Part of the issue is that adoption candidates from other countries are not being referred to Ireland.

"There are at least 14 times more prospective Irish parents seeking to adopt babies and children than there are children available, or being referred to Ireland for adoption from abroad," said Jerry Buttimer, the committee chairman.

"That's a very worrying concern - because obviously people want to adopt, and children aren't being referred to Ireland."

"The other issue being raised with us is that large numbers of older children, or children with special needs continue to live in orphanages or institutions run by states."

Buttimer said today's meeting presents the opportunity to address the issue with inter-country adoption ahead of the committee's quarterly meeting with the Minister for Children.

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