Ireland’s ‘house of tears’ | Origins Canada | 60s Scoop | One Small Sacrifice | and my thanks

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

(excerpt) Some of the children – the cute ones, says Ms. Corless – were adopted at a price in North America, often without their mothers’ consent. John P. Rodgers, a survivor of St. Mary’s and an author who wrote a memoir about his experience, For the Love of My Mother, now being developed as a Hollywood film script, believes that the available photographs of the home were part of a marketing ploy. “These beautiful photographs of nuns in religious garb taking care of the children with chubby cheeks, white ankle socks and shoes, neat dress, it’s a real film shot. I realized that was a staged photograph,” he says in an interview.

The nuns would send letters to families describing little girls and boys they had available. “One report of an Irish health department in 2012 suggested that perhaps 1,000 children were trafficked from the Tuam institution alone,” Prof. Smith says.

Will there be a TRUTH COMMISSION in IRELAND too?

A harrowing discovery in Ireland casts light on the Catholic Church’s history of abusing unwed mothers and their babies – and emboldened survivors to demand accountability…

But the reality was horrific. They were homes of abuse and neglect; places of forced confinement for the mothers and where babies were allowed to die – murdered, in effect. Kevin Higgins, a lawyer familiar with the issue, says the deaths were “at least manslaughter.” One Irish newspaper has called the scandal “our little Holocaust.”

The reason for the homes was simple and rarely questioned at the time. The mothers were unwed; their children often called “devil’s spawn.” Set up by the government and run by Catholic religious orders, the mother and baby homes were part of a system to deal with the perceived shame of “illegitimate” children and the women who bore them.  …The rest, 796 infants and toddlers, she believed, were in a mass grave in an area of low-cost housing, built on the former grounds of St. Mary’s by Galway County Council.

READ: Ireland’s ‘house of tears’: Why Tuam’s survivors want justice for lost and abused children – The Globe and Mail

*** Has this scandal gone Global?

Many Canadians are unaware that in the immediate postwar decades, federal and provincial governments funded “Homes for Unwed Mothers” in every Canadian province. Over 300,000 unmarried mothers were systematically separated from their babies during this period.  Mothers report verbal, physical, psychological, and sexual abuse in these homes, and the Canadian government has so far done nothing to acknowledge these wrongs.  Origins Canada advocates for a Committee to Investigate such as the one held in Australia to uncover the illegal, unethical and human rights abuses in adoption policies and practices in both Indigenous and Non-Indigenous contexts. This type of inquiry may serve to validate the lifelong psychological and intergenerational damage to families by draconian adoption policies and practices, and to provide mental health and healing services to those denied them so many years ago.  – Valerie Andrews, Executive Director Origins Canada: Supporting Those Separated by Adoption

******** DECLINING International Adoptions

Americans adopted around 5,370 children from other countries in fiscal year 2016. For the first time, males outnumbered females among adoptees from abroad.

Source: International adoptions to U.S. declined in 2016 | Pew Research Center






The $800-million proposed agreement with Sixties Scoop survivors that was announced by the Canadian government isn’t the first aiming to compensate Indigenous people for historical wrongs. (Top photo)

READ: Sixties Scoop settlement the latest involving Canadian Indigenous people – Canada – CBC News


And I thought I’d share some of my own experience being an adoptee.

2nd Edition on Kindle and Amazon

Stop a moment.  Who are you?

Stop and think about…  Have you ever considered that an adoptee doesn’t know who they are …?

Placed as a baby, decisions were made for me and my life in a Wisconsin courtroom in 1957. At age 22, in 1978, I went back to that courtroom and found a judge who luckily remembered my adoption and I asked for his help.

Many still do not appreciate or know how difficult it is to find out (WHO YOU ARE) after a sealed closed adoption. Those who don’t experience being adopted have little comparison, comprehension or compassion for its complexities, or what life is like in legal limbo.

I’m a Split Feather, a Lost Bird, an adoptee with Native American ancestry. I know this because I opened my adoption. I wanted to know my name, and why my parents gave me up, or had they abandoned me.

I wanted the truth, good, bad, both. I wanted what you what – ancestors, names, places.

Truly it was like being trapped in two worlds… (After my memoir came we did Two Worlds: Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects) – now living with two sets of parents and two last names; life gets fuzzy between truth and fiction.  As a young adult adoptee, it was pure nonsense having to accept “this was done in your best interest.”  Clearly that wasn’t enough information to build a life on.  I needed more.  I needed my own medical information, I told the kind judge.

To get to the truth was all uphill. Years of uphill. Laws made it illegal for me to look or know my own name.  (How strange and confusing all this was.)

The tragedy was I felt like a lost-and-found item in a department store. Unclaimed, some strangers came in, spotted me and said “I’ll take that one.” As their child, I became invisible, unidentifiable, and perfectly suited to blend in with all the other Americans.  (But I didn’t ask for this.)

The agency Catholic Charities handled me (the newborn) and sealed my fate.  My identity and my mother’s identity would remain a secret, papal leaders decreed. (It’s still happening –  records are legally changed and locked up!)

It would take years before I could rightfully claim my identity and know what happened that I happened.

Because adoption records were locked by Wisconsin law, my decision to know who I am involved risk.  Not only would this test my courage, it could get me locked up.

It also meant I’d face the fear of my birthmother rejecting me a second time.

My memoir One Small Sacrifice tells the entire story of how I went from one of the Stolen Generations to now, today… (I was using my adoptee name when I wrote it in 2004. I legally changed my name in 2015 to Trace Lara Hentz. More INFO)

As for any settlement, the USA has not issued an apology or any settlement for the Indian Adoption Projects or ARENA (a program that moved children from Canada to the US and vice versa.) I helped to write and publish a book series so one day, some day, we will have this history to use in the courts.

************************************** AND ONE MORE THING

a little cyber ghost treat that looks good!

I really want you to know that your blogs are so good, my words are insufficient.  I often read HOURS because of you all on wordpress. We are our own community of souls putting good thoughts and ideas out there into the blogosphere. Your photography, your poetry, your reviews, your art, your writing, your books, your experiences fill me up (usually on Mondays!) I cannot thank you enough — all of you. XOX Lara/Trace

Next Generation Nepal | “earthquake orphans” | Reconnecting Trafficked Children with Their Families

Reconnecting Trafficked Children with Their Families. Next Generation Nepal rebuilds family connections torn apart by child trafficking and helps rural communities become stronger, healthier places to raise their children.

SEE: Next Generation Nepal – How We Work

NGN Turns 10: A Decade of Rescuing and Reunifying Trafficked Children with their Families

With your help, we have brought over 500 children home, raised awareness and started an initiative to stop trafficking before it begins.

Dear Friend of Next Generation Nepal,

It has been 12 years since I first arrived in Nepal for what I thought would be a small blip in my story. Little did I know that I was about to embark down a path that would change the entire trajectory of my life in ways I couldn’t imagine.

This journey began in 2004 when I volunteered at Little Princes Children’s Home on the outskirts of Kathmandu and met a group of boys and girls who would change my life forever. I’d been led to believe that these kids were orphans, which invoked heartfelt empathy and a strong desire for me to bring them joy in their young lives. I soon learned the truth—they had mothers and fathers, siblings and communities where they once had a full and happy life which they had been taken from. I was shocked to know these kids had been trafficked. It was because of this realization that I made a promise to do whatever possible to bring them and as many others back home. Out of that promise the seed that would grow into Next Generation Nepal was planted.

It took two years of commitment and hard work, but, in 2006, NGN was finally able to open the doors of its official office in Nepal and rescue the Little Princes. Soon after, I set off to the remote district of Humla in search of their families. This was the first rescue and reunification that NGN did.

Over the last 10 years, NGN has continued to grow.  Today we work in 31 districts and have helped reconnect over 500 children with their families! In addition to our reintegration work, NGN is now considered an expert on ethical volunteering in Nepal, and our Community Anti-Trafficking (CAT) project works to prevent children from being trafficked in the first place.

NGN has persevered through a civil war, earthquakes and constant political unrest, but we have not let anything stand in our way in accomplishing our mission. Our teams continue to rescue, care and search in the remotest parts of Nepal for the families of these children so that we can bring them home.

NGN is celebrating the joy of 10 years of rescuing and reunifying trafficked children as well as broadening NGN’s reach into bringing awareness to families and communities of the causes of trafficking and stopping it before it begins.

There are still thousands of children who have been displaced from their families and living in abusive conditions for the financial gain of their captors. Please help us to begin this next 10 years by supporting NGN’s work so we can not only bring hundreds more children home, but to stop child trafficking at its core.

With Gratitude,

Conor Grennan (author)
President, Next Generation Nepal

MORE:  After the Great Nepal Earthquake
April 25, 2016

I drove to the NGN transit home where I was overjoyed to find 17 children playing games in a make-shift tent of tarpaulins, and being cared for by our staff and —believe it or not— the Little Princes!  Yes, the now young adults whom NGN Founder Conor Grennan had made famous as children in his book, “Little Princes,” had kept their promise that in the event of an earthquake they would protect the younger children. In addition to this we had a four-week supply of food, water and medicines, so even if the roads and airport were shut off, we could all still survive.

Within the heavily cracked walls of a room at the Central Child Welfare Board, I joined the Government and other NGOs to plan what our response would be for affected children. We knew that the situation in Kathmandu was not as bad as the rural areas. But we also knew that the traffickers were already prowling the villages looking for children to remove them from their frightened parents and place them in profit-making children’s homes.  To make matters worse, several children’s homes were already announcing hundreds of new places for children to come to Kathmandu. It was like the previous decade’s civil war all over again—families would be torn apart by hollow promises of safety and education, only to be used as fundraising tools by organizations wishing to profit from the millions of dollars of disaster aid money flowing into the country.  All these unscrupulous organizations needed to succeed in their plans were children to be falsely presented as “earthquake orphans.” We had to act fast.

…A child-friendly space is a basically a large tent that acts as a safe space for children after a disaster. In the NGN child-friendly spaces, the children were offered structured play and learning activities, psycho-social counseling and locally-prepared nutritious meals. This gave them the opportunity to regain a sense of normality in their lives, and allowed their parents some much-needed respite.  But our child-friendly spaces were more than this—they also built trust with the local community, which, in time, allowed NGN to start raising awareness within the community of the dangers of child trafficking and the importance of family preservation.

By July we had established 11 child-friendly spaces in hard-hit villages where we had assessed there was a high risk of trafficking. We had also supported the Nepal Police to establish two transport check posts where we could intercept buses to search for children who might be being trafficked to Kathmandu.  When we found unaccompanied children on the buses, we rescued them, and the local government returned them to their families.

By now we were also able to roll out our awareness-raising campaigns. These included a traveling acting troupe that performed a street drama about child traffickers pretending to be representatives of NGOs to lure vulnerable children to the city; several passionate street rallies led by school children demanding an “end to child trafficking”; leaflets and posters; competitions and speeches; and a radio jingle to reach the most remote families whom we could not access by road or foot.


An International Adoption Clouded in Deception

February 20, 2012: Imagine a complete stranger telling you that your adopted daughter, who you always believed was an orphan, was actually not. “Surreal and heart wrenching” is how Ana would describe it.
Names have been changed in the story to protect the privacy of those involved.

In early 2004, a Spanish woman named Ana wanted to adopt a Nepalese child. Nepal was still in an armed conflict and she was told that many children were losing their parents. She arranged a meeting with a representative at the Consulate of Nepal in Spain to find out more information. Ana was given the contact information for an orphanage in Nepal and started the complex process necessary to adopt a child.

After about one year, the adoption became official and Ana, overcome with joy, traveled to the orphanage in Kathmandu to meet her new daughter and bring her home to Spain. The orphanage had arranged for Ana to adopt Sunitha, a six-year-old girl with a personality that enchanted Ana from the beginning. As months passed, Sunitha quickly learned Spanish and slowly began assimilating to Spanish culture. “Sunitha was becoming a Spaniard, but I also wanted her to be aware of her Nepalese heritage. I did not want Sunitha to forget her origins,” said Ana…

Keep Reading


Editor’s Note
Many of the children in Nepal’s “orphanages” are there because traffickers (who are sometimes relatives) deceive parents in remote villages into allowing them to take their kids to “elite educational facilities” that are actually centers for child exploitation. In fewer instances, impoverished Nepalese parents make desperate decisions to take their children themselves to children’s homes under the assumption that they will at least have a chance at an education and a successful life. However, these parents do not think the homes’ managers would ever send their children overseas through adoption. They assume that children’s homes will care for their kids until they enter college and can work on their own.

According to The U.S. State Department website, the United States “continues to strongly recommend that prospective adoptive parents refrain from adopting children from Nepal due to grave concerns about the reliability of Nepal’s adoption system and credible reports that children have been stolen from birth parents, who did not intend to irrevocably relinquish parental rights as required by INA 101(b)(1)(F). We also strongly urge adoption service providers not to accept new applications for adoption from Nepal.” To read more about the US State Department’s guidelines on adoptions from Nepal click here.


Last year: Children left devastated by the earthquake in Nepal in 2015 were preyed upon by slave traders… Wealthy British families are buying children left devastated by last year’s earthquake in Nepal to work as domestic slaves. The children – who are as young as 10 – are being sold for as little as £5,250 (Rs 500,000, $7,468) by black market gangs operating in India’s Punjab region, according to an investigation by The Sun. I published about Nepal here.

Here is another adoption trafficking victim here.

Just remember conflict areas like Syria are ripe for human trafficking.


800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update

From my friend Toritto:

On June 2, 2014 I posted the below article concerning an Irish historian’s claim that hundreds of dead babies were to be found on the grounds of a “home” for unwed mothers run by …

PLEASE READ: 800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update

It’s Friday and a good day to cry my eyes out… Lara/Trace

Ireland coverage

Burning of the Colored Orphan Asylum, NYC

It’s shocking…Laramie

“Riots in New York: Destruction of the Colored Orphan Asylum,” Illustrated London News, August 15, 1863. Reproduced collection. New-York Historical Society.



Pennsylvania Orphanages


Orphan Society of Philadelphia (Pa.)
Extent: 4.5 linear feet
The Orphan Society of Philadelphia, founded in 1814, was the first non-sectarian orphanage in Pennsylvania. In 1965, due to low enrollment and financial and staffing issues, the Orphan Society merged with the Elwyn School, now known as Elwyn, in Delaware County, Pa.  The Orphan Society of Philadelphia records, 1815-1965 (bulk 1930-1965), consist of administrative and financial records, legal documents, historical files, orphan records, and other materials.  Of special interest is an Orphan Asylum register listing orphan admissions (name, birth date, admission date) and dates of discharge or death from 1815 to 1896. (View full finding aid.)
Germantown Historical Society [Contact Us]
Foulke and Long Institute for Orphan Girls.
Extent: 4.75 linear feet
The Foulke and Long Institute for Orphan Girls was established in Philadelphia in 1882 for orphaned daughters of soldiers, firemen, and others sacrificed for the public benefit. In 1888, Foulke and Long merged with the Industrial Home for the Training of Girls in the Arts of Housewifery and Sewing. Foulke and Long moved to the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia in 1913, where it remained until the institute merged with the Youth Study Center of Philadelphia in 1960. The Foulke and Long Institute for Orphan Girls records, 1857-1948, are primarily comprised of administrative, financial, and pupil records for the Foulke and Long Institute, with some materials from the Industrial Home for Girls. There are Admission and Dismission Committee records, meeting minutes, account books and ledgers, and many other document types. (View full finding aid.)
Springfield Township Historical Society (Montgomery County, Pa.) [Contact Us]
Contosta, David R.
Extent: 2.5 linear feet
The Carson Valley School opened in 1918 as the Carson College for Orphan Girls with funding from Philadelphia streetcar tycoon Robert N. Carson. Around the time of the school’s 75th anniversary, Chestnut Hill College professor David R. Contosta was commissioned to research the history of the school and write the book Philadelphia’s Progressive Orphanage: The Carson Valley School. The David R. Contosta research files on Carson Valley School, 1992-1995, are comprised of research notes, copies of scholarly and newspaper articles, copies of school records, and other materials compiled by Contosta while writing his book. (View full finding aid.)
Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia [Contact Us]
1926-1985, undated
Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia.
Extent: 2 linear feet (2 containers)
The Orphan Photograph collection houses unrelated photographic prints, negatives, slides and other visual media created for or by the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, dating from circa 1926 to 1985. The collection has an unknown custodial history; it appears to have been gathered together over time due to the random nature of the images and lack or loss of any connection between individual images and other larger collections. Researchers will find images of a variety of animal and plant specimens; photos taken during a few Academy events and multiple Academy sponsored expeditions; exhibits; as well as numerous portraits and snapshots of people affiliated with the institution. In addition, there are a handful of photographs and negatives produced or collected by the Public Relations Department for use in the Academy newsletter, Frontiers and other publications. Of particular note, are the photographs taken during Academy sponsored expeditions, especially those few snapshots taken during George Vanderbilt’s trans-Africa expedition in the 1940s. (View full finding aid.)
Moore Archives at Historic Yellow Springs [Contact Us]
Historic Yellow Springs (Organization)
Extent: 140 linear feet
Historic Yellow Springs is a non-profit organization in Chester County, Pennsylvania that preserves and promotes the history and arts of Yellow Springs village. The village was the site of 18th and 19th century spas; the first military hospital in North America, built during the Revolutionary War; an orphan school for children of Civil War Soldiers; the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA)’s Country School; Good News Productions, the film studio that created The Blob; and Chester Springs Studio, a vibrant arts center that merged with Historic Yellow Springs in 2007. The Historic Yellow Springs collection, 1823-2013, is a combination of original records and collected secondary-source materials about the several organizations that have occupied the village of Historic Yellow Springs over its long history from 1722 into the 21st century. (View full finding aid.)

Orphans in USA Orphanages (1653-1900)

New York Orphans Records (click)

As early as 1653, New York City (formerly called New Amsterdam) recognized that it needed to care for the city’s minor children, widows, and orphans. In February of that year, the Deacons of the Reformed Dutch Church were appointed to act as Orphan Masters. Their duties were to “keep their eyes open and look as Orphanmasters after widows and orphans…” They were to report to city officials who would appoint cuators if necessary to take care of the estates and effects of these widows and orphaned children.

On February 10, 1653, two men were appointed to act, not as Orphanmasters as originally intended, but as Overseers of Orphans. City officials continued to rule in the Orphan’s Court, which had been created by Stuyvesant to “attend to orphans and minor children within the jurisdiction of this city [New York City]”

The Records of this Orphans’ Court have been published as “Minutes of the Orphan Masters of New Amsterdam 1655-1663” by Berthold Fernow and “The Minutes of the Orphan Masters of New Amsterdam 1663-1668” translated by Edmund B. O’Callaghan. Genealogists can also consult The Records of New Amsterdam : From 1653 to 1674 Anno Domini by Berthold Fernow

There were may orphanages and orphan asylums in the 19th century. I have begun transcribing records for as many of these as possible

Some New York early orphanages were

  • Half Orphan Asylum for Destitute and Abandoned Children
  • Leake and Watts Orphan House
  • Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum (I have been transcribing these records)
  • Hebrew Orphan Asylum, Brooklyn
  • Old Schuler Mansion, Albany
  • Westchester-Temporary Home for Destitute Children in White Plains opened in 1885

Many of these institutions were founded in New York City to care for destitute children of immigrants from Ireland and Russia, Germany and other eastern European countries. Many immigrants found themselves unable to work and thus were unable feed their children. Women died during childbirth leaving a number of uncared for children. Many women also had illegitimate children that they could not provide for. Husbands died, living behind widows with large families. Some parents were addicted to alcohol or committed crimes and wound up in prison.

By 1850, New York state had 27 orphanages run by public and private funds but the problem of orphaned or abandoned children left behind roaming the streets begging for food was growing.

Reform groups and wealthy benefactors set up orphanages in large buildings in lower Manhattan and provided food, clothing and shelter to children. Many were run by churches and there was an emphasis on moral training and discipline. The children also learned vocational skills from mechanics to tailoring.

The Children’s Aid Society, founded in 1854, shipped some of these children to homes in the South and West on Orphan Trains. Boys and girls were give a train ticket and sent to the mid-west. Other charities – the Children’s Mission to the Children of the Destitute (Boston), the New York Juvenile Asylum, the New England Home for Little Wanderers (Boston), and the New York Foundling Hospital also followed the Children’s Aid Society’s example, using Orphan Trains to relocate destititute and abandoned children.

Westchester began housing destitute children in its Almshouse in Eastview. Opened in 1828, the Almshouse cared for impoverished adults and the elderly, and children shared space with them. Dating back to the colonial era, New York City assumed responsibility for its citizens who were destitute, sick, homeless, or otherwise unable to care for themselves. The city maintained an almshouse, various hospitals, and a workhouse on Blackwell’s Island (now called Roosevelt Island) for the poor.

In 1880, New York state passed a law that ended the practice of housing children in Almshouses with adults, unless they were born there.

Orphanage Stenography Graduates 1906Orphanage Stenography Graduates 1906

Photo courtesy of Family Tree Connection.

Choose from the list of Almshouses and Orphanages below:

Before 1850

Almshouse children (orphans) sent to New Netherland (New York) from Amsterdam Holland on the ship De Waegh (The Weigh-House), August 1655 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Palatine (German) Orphaned Children Apprenticed by Gov. Hunter in New York 1710-1714 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Almshouse Records New York 1819-1840 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]


It’s not an orphanage but I didn’t know where else to put this incredible database – a List of those who died while in Staten Island Quarantine May 1849 – Dec. 1850 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum Rochester, Monroe Co., New York in 1850 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]


Almshouse Records New York City 1855-1858 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]


Orphans in the Sisters of Charity Orphan Asylum New York City, New York 1860 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Half-Orphans in the Sisters of Charity Orphan Asylum New York City, New York 1860 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]


History of Various Orphan Homes in Board of State Commissioners of Public Charities of the State of New York, 1870; Argus Company, Printers, Albany. transcribed & submitted by Linda Conpenelis Schmidt, July 2007

* Albany Orphan Asylum
* Davenport Female Orphan Asylum, Bath
* Society for the Relief of Half-Orphan and Destitute Children, New York
* Colored Orphan Asylum, New York
* Southern Tier Orphans’ Home, Elmira
* … more orphanage records to come!


Orphans in St. Patrick’s Orphan Asylum Rochester, Monroe County, New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

St. Vincent’s Female Orphan Asylum Albany, Albany County, New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

St. Patrick’s Male Orphan Asylum Cortlandt, Westchester County, New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Troy Catholic Orphan (Male) Asylum Troy, Rensalaer County New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

St. Vincent’s Orphan Protectory (Male) Uitca Oneida County, New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

St. Joseph’s Female Orphan Asylum Brooklyn, Kings County New York 1880 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]


Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum Manhattan New York 1900 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Hebrew Orphan Asylum Amsterdam Avenue & 137 Street, Manhattan New York 1900 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society of New York, Manhattan New York 1900 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Jewish Home for Children aka Jewish Foster Home and Orphan Asylum of Philadelphia, Church Lane (Mill Street), Philadelphia Pennsylvania, 1900

Orphan Asylum Society Manhattan New York 1900 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Society for Relief of Half-Orphans & Destitute Children 1900, Manhattan New York [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

Albany Orphan Asylum Albany City, New York, Tenth Ward.; 1900 [An Olive Tree Genealogy free database]

threads of feeling


In the mid-18th century thousands of poor women deposited their newborn babies at the Foundling Hospital. The scraps of material left to identify them tell an extraordinary story.

By Kathryn Hughes

EXCERPT: Whether the mothers’ fierce hope that their babies would be better off at the hospital was justified is hard to say. Two-thirds of the foundlings died, which sounds shocking until you remember that nearly half the children born in London at the time would perish in infancy. Certainly it looks as though the hospital administrators realised the damage a toxic city environment could have on small and vulnerable constitutions. Within a few days of being received the children were shipped out to the country, where they were suckled by wet nurses. If they managed to survive for six years, they returned to Bloomsbury for some solid if rudimentary schooling. From there the boys were apprenticed in a variety of trades and the girls prepared for a life in service. The hospital took its duties as quasi-parent seriously. Any whiff of exploitation and the children were recalled. One female employer who savagely mistreated her foundling apprentice was prosecuted and hanged.

The mothers may have been over-optimistic, too, in their belief that one day they would be in a position to reclaim their baby. Out of the 16,282 infants admitted between 1741 and 1760, only 152 were ever called for. Some women, though, clearly had the drive and determination to execute their plan come what may. One of the most extraordinary pieces of fabric in the exhibition belongs to Sarah Bender. Attached to her baby was a piece of elaborate patchwork, made up of bits of printed fabric, on which she had embroidered a heart in red thread. She retained the matching piece. Eight years passed, during which time the child, renamed Benjamin Twirl, was presumably farmed out to the country, and made stout and ruddy enough to eventually be brought back to the city.

Then, one day nearly a decade after she had first trudged out to Bloomsbury, Sarah Bender banged on the door of the Foundling Hospital and presented her piece of patchwork. Something in her circumstances must have changed. Charles/Benjamin would be coming home. This was one heart that had been mended.

Threads of Feeling is at the Foundling Museum, London WC1, from 14 October to 6 March 2011.

Sorry is just a word to the Stolen Children

National Sorry Day?

On May 26, there is an unofficial holiday in Australia called National Sorry Day.  The day commemorates the day a national report called “Bringing Them Home” was official handed to the Australian government in 1997 after a two year inquiry.

The report symbolized the end to a national effort to make right a major wrong done to the native peoples of Australia.

The “Bring Them Home Report” Found That At Least 100,000 Children Were Forcibly Removed

Aboriginal Children Were Forcibly Removed From Their Homes By Government Statute
Aboriginal Children Were Forcibly Removed From Their Homes By Government Statute
The Children Were Sent To Government Housing Or Sold Or Adopted To Work For European Families
The Children Were Sent To Government Housing Or Sold Or Adopted To Work For European Families

The Stolen Generations

Starting in 1869 with the Aboriginal Protection Act, children of the indigenous peoples of Australia and children of mixed descent were forcibly removed from their parents’ homes with the government taking over guardianship powers over the children.  The children were placed in government housing and raised away from their families.  There were numerous reasons why this was done ranging from protection of the children to assimilating them into European society so the children could grow up and serve in European households.  According to the Bring Them Home report, over 100,000 children had been forcibly removed from their homes in Australia over the years. However, the actual number is believed to be much higher but hard to calculate because for most of the time no record keeping.

Many have called the forced removals an act of genocide and almost all agree that while the stated intentions of the forced removals was to improve the lives of aboriginal peoples, the effect was to destroy  families with little to no tangible results. The Children that were removed from their families have become known as the Stolen Generations.

The Bring Them Home Report Found That At Least 100,000 Children Were Forcibly Removed

The Bring Them Home Report

Forcible removal of children continued until the 1970s. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s much political and public debate occurred about the removal policies. In 1992, Australian Prime Minister Keating acknowledged for the first time that children were actually taken from the arms of their mothers by force. As a result of government acknowledgement of the child removal policies, an inquiry was held about the impact of the policies between 1995 and 1997. The Final Report entitled “Bringing Them Home – Report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families” was released in 1997.

National Sorry Day Is Meant To Start The Healing Process

One year to the day after the Bringing Them Home Report was released, National Sorry Day began.  The day commemorates and acknowledges the wrong that was done to the indigenous peoples of Australia.  The point behind National Sorry Day was to try to let the healing process begin.  The day also remembers other wrongs done to the Aboriginal people of Australia other than forcibly removing their children.

National Sorry day was held annually until 2004.  It was then renamed National Day of Healing.  However, after only one year the day again was renamed to National Sorry Day.  Despite the public acknowledgment of what happened and the National Sorry Day, the Australian government has never formally apologized to the indigenous people for what was done.

Tip of the Iceburg? Foster Care Deaths?


Lori is a friend of mine

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) admits to 338 deaths of children in public Foster Care in just one year in its FY 2013 report, but researchers have documented not only a larger number of Foster Child Deaths, but also MILLIONS of DEAD, DISAPPEARED, MASS KIDNAPPED, SOLD FOR LEGAL AND ILLEGAL ADOPTION, and TRAFFICKED American children in “STATISTICS OF ADOPTION and ASSISTED REPRODUCTION” –

*********** NEWS

After Rise in Foster Care Deaths, DFPS Approves New Regulations

  • by Aamena Ahmed | April 4, 2014

Amid recent growth in abuse or neglect deaths of children in foster homes, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services approved a set of new regulations in 2014 meant to provide more oversight of children in foster care. Despite the new rules, advocates are calling for increased training for foster parents and additional checks on foster homes.

“Unfortunately last year, there was a very alarming number of abuse and neglect fatalities in foster care, and there was a realization we needed to do more,” said DFPS spokesman Patrick Crimmins. “We had to have better information on what was going on in foster homes and who the children were regularly coming in contact with at the home.”

Revised rules for new and existing foster homes apply to the state’s 220 foster child-placing agencies licensed by DFPS. In addition to existing regulations, the new rules include a requirement for more interviews with members of the foster home’s community, such as neighbors and school employees whom the children would regularly be in contact with, and a review of the household’s finances. They also require child-placing agencies to more closely monitor existing foster homes for major changes, including job losses, divorces, new household members or frequent visitors.

“These rules significantly strengthen protections for our foster children,” John Specia, DFPS commissioner, said in a statement. “Our focus is ensuring that we know who is in these homes and who may be around these children that could pose an unacceptable risk.”

The new rules are the first substantive revision of child-placing agency rules since 2007.

*** Abstract: Criminal Adoptees

Corporate Author: Gardner Press, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1977

St. Ann’s Catholic Orphange: Salt Lake City, Utah

The Orphanage:Caring for the Kids

Although he was the son of poor Irish immigrants and possessed only a grammar school education, Thomas Kearns became one of Utah’s wealthiest and most influential public figures.  Like many of Utah’s earliest millionaires, Kearns made his fortune from the territory’s rich silver deposits.  In 1883, with his partners John Judge and David Keith, he developed the Silver King mine in Park City, which became one of the biggest producers in Utah history.  Eventually he served as U.S. Senator and publisher of both the Salt Lake Tribune and the Salt Lake Telegram newspapers before his death in 1918.

Mining is a dangerous occupation, and accidents in Kearns’s mine and many others left families without a breadwinner and children without parents.  Moved by compassion for those orphans, the Holy Cross Sisters opened an orphanage in 1891 in a two-story adobe building on First South and Third East.  The building was only a block south of the planned site of the Cathedral of the Madeleine, and in fact had been utilized as a rectory by Fr. Lawrence Scanlan and other priests who served the growing Catholic population in St. Mary’s church one block in another direction, west of the future Cathedral, on Second East.  When the present rectory was erected and Salt Lake City became a diocese in 1891, Bishop Scanlan gave the building to the orphans.
But the orphan population kept growing, necessitating additions to the building on two separate occasions.  In 1898, Bishop Scanlan accepted an option on a fifteen acre parcel extending to the south of Twenty-first South, with the idea of building an expanded orphanage which would have the capability of producing much of its own food on its rich farmland.  The following year, Mrs. Kearns gave Bishop Scanlan $50,000 for construction of the orphanage, which was designed by Carl M. Neuhausen, architect of the Cathedral and Holy Cross Hospital, and opened in 1900.  At about that time, the orphanage had a population in excess of one hundred children.  When wealthy miner and merchant Patrick Phelan died in 1901, he left a substantial endowment to the orphanage.

The original orphanage at First South and Third East had been Bishop Scanlan’s rectory.

St. Ann Orphanage was not only a living facility, but a school as well, educating children from the ages of five to fifteen.  Other neighborhood children enrolled too, to take advantage of the excellent nearby school.  In 1926 there were thirty-six resident boys and thirty resident girls enrolled, as well as fifty non-resident children.
Nowadays the term “orphanage” evokes mental images of Dickensian hellholes of squalor, starvation, and abuse.  St. Ann was nothing of the kind.  Surviving photographs show clean, well-clothed children apparently happy and thriving on what was then a rural acreage.  Deacon Silvio Mayo, who worked at the orphanage while a student at Judge Memorial Catholic High School, speaks with high praise of the quality and quantity of the food.

The new St. Ann Orphanage shortly after its construction on Twenty-first South. Note how tiny the trees in front were in those days!

But social welfare practices in the United States began taking a different turn in the mid-twentieth century, particularly after the creation of government agencies who could do what privately endowed programs could not.  Like the great settlement houses in the cities, orphanages like St. Ann yielded to more modern ways.  Between 1953 and 1955 St. Ann made a transition from orphanage to school, which it remains today under the auspices of St. Ann parish.

Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City Pastoral Center, 27 C Street, Salt Lake City

Fordham Heights, NY: Catholic Orphan Asylum

Catholic Orphan Asylum, New York:

 “Catholic Orphan Asylum. A New Extensive Site Is Selected on Fordham Heights,” The New York Times (Nov. 22, 1898).

Roman Catholic Orphans’ Asylum – Bronx, NY

Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum, 301 West Kingsbridge Road at Sedgwick Avenue
The Bronx, N.Y. 10468

5th Ave

St. Patrick’s Boys Asylum (Manhattan)
Fifth Avenue at 51st and 52nd Streets (1851-1902)
(c.1851) – Boys’ Chapel
Prince and Mott Streets (1826-1851)

St. Patrick’s Girls Asylum (Manhattan)
461 Madison Avenue at 51st Street (1886-1902) & Prince and Mott Streets (1826-1886)

The Roman Catholic Benevolent Society, established in 1817, was the oldest charitable institution in the Archdiocese of New York. At that time, parentless Catholic children were lost to the faith if they were taken in by Protestant orphan societies. From the beginning, the society was administered by the Sisters of Charity. The first building, located at Prince and Mulberry Streets, opened with 30 inmates, but within a few years was overcrowded. In 1826, a new building was erected on Prince and Mott Streets, but by the 1840s, it, too, was badly overcrowded as was St. Joseph’s Half-Orphan Asylum on West 11th Street. In 1845, Archbishop John Hughes appealed to the city for land on which to build a larger facility, and was offered the entire block between Fifth and Madison Avenues from 51st to 52nd Streets. The deed, signed on August 1, 1846, directed that the rent would be one dollar per year as long as the property was used to house orphans. At that time, Fifth Avenue was not paved and the area was relatively uninhabited. A few years later, in 1852, Archbishop Hughes would purchase the block directly to the south for a new cathedal that was begun in 1858 but not consecrated until 1879.

In 1851, the boys were moved into the new facility on Fifth Avenue. The first building had accommodations for five hundred boys, and a trade school wing, built in 1893, provided accommodations for two hundred more. The girls’ wing, completed in 1870, held eight hundred. There was every facility for religious, moral and social training.

A separate building for girls was built on Madison Avenue. Designed by Renwick & Sands, the five-story building was completed in 1886. At this time, the last of the girls were moved from Prince Street and the old orphanage there was converted into a parish school.

By the 1890s, the midtown area had been developed and land values had increased enormously. Private institutions were enticed to sell their lucrative property and use the proceeds to relocate farther north. Nearby St. Luke’s Protestant Episcopal Hospital, located since 1846 at Fifth Avenue between 53rd and 54th Streets, sold its property and built a new facility on Morningside Heights in 1896. Columbia College, which built a new campus at Madison Avenue and 49th Street in 1857, moved to its present Morningside Heights site in 1897. About that time, a committee was formed to select a new site for the Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum.

In November 1898, the committee met at the Archbishop’s residence and decided to acquire from the Bailey estate a tract of about 28 acres, most of which was between Sedgwick Avenue and the Harlem River in the Fordham Heights section of The Bronx. Located on the highest point in New York City, the site served as a strategic vantage point during the Revolutionary War. In 1847, William H. Bailey, who was partners with P.T. Barnum of the Barnum and Bailey Circus fame, bought 26 acres of land as a country home for his bride. In 1899, the land was purchased for $290,000, and erection of the buildings began. The next year, in 1900, Archbishop Corrigan was given permission by the city and state to sell most of the asylum’s midtown property to developers for $2,100,000, although he retained the Boland Trade School that fronted Madison Avenue for his proposed minor seminary, Cathedral College. The proceeds from the sale paid for the new orphanage in the Bronx and provided a $1 million endowment for the orphans

The new Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum was built atop the summit of the high ridge immediately east of the Harlem River, about 140 to 190 feet above tidewater. There were two buildings—one for boys, the other for girls—besides the old Bailey mansion. Each building was five stories high with a basement, measured 385 long by 50 feet deep, and had two wings 50 feet by 125, and a chapel. The new buildings provided accomodations for 1,600 inmates and were occupied in April, 1902, although they and the grounds were not completed until the next year.

With the passage of the Widows’ Compensation law in 1918, the number of orphans at the asylum was reduced to about 700, which was less than half of the capacity. In 1921, the Archdiocese sold the property to the Treasury Department, who planned to convert the facilities into a a hospital for ex-service patients suffering from mental and nervous disorders, and arranged for the transfer of remaining orphans to other facilities. The purchase was turned over to the newly formed U.S. Veterans’ Bureau by Executive Order on April 20, 1922. By adding several buildings throughout the years, the Bureau made the Bronx hospital the second largest V.A. facility in the nation, with a total of 1,663 beds, and the first veterans hospital in New York City.

More reading:

Jenkins, Stephen. The Story of the Bronx from the Purchase Made by the Dutch from the Indians in 1639 to the Present Day. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1912

The Manhattan Guide – Greater New York Red Book. New York: The Manhattan Guide Company, 1901.

Nelson, George. Organs in the United States and Canada Database. Seattle, Wash.
“St. Patrick’s Day Parade in NY Dedicated to Sisters of Charity,” Vincentian Family News (Feb. 25, 2009).

Shelley, Thomas J. The Bicentennial History of the Archdiocese of New York 1808-2008. Strasbourg: Éditions du Signe, 2007.

“Soldiers to Give Up Polyclinic Hospital for Home in Bronx,” The New York Times (Oct. 6, 1921).


Bellefaire Jewish Orphan Asylum: Cleveland, OH

Cleveland’s Bellefaire Jewish Orphan Asylum

1868 Cleveland Jewish Orphan Asylum is founded in Cleveland, Ohio and is residence to 80 children. By 1900, the orphanage cares for 400 children in a home located at E. 55th Street and Woodland Avenue.
1922 Jewish Day Nursery opens and joins Bellefaire in 1945. It later changes its name to JDN Early Childhood Center to better reflect the programming and diverse student-base.
1924 The orphanage hires its first psychiatrist.
1928 The cornerstone of the new campus is laid at the agency’s current location on Fairmount Boulevard in Shaker Heights. The orphanage is renamed Bellefaire Jewish Children’s Bureau, now known as Bellefaire JCB.
1941 The agency begins offering therapeutic services for troubled youth and those needing a stable living environment.
1954 Admissions are opened to children of all faiths.
1961 Jewish Big Brother Association partners with Bellefaire. In 1973 the program opens to include mentoring of girls, and amends its name to Jewish Big Brother Big Sister Association in 1983.
1979 Bellefaire begins offering residential treatment, community-based services and early childhood programs. During the 1980s specialized foster care, alcohol and substance abuse prevention services, and Parent and Children Together (PACT) programs are introduced.
2000 In response to studies by Mt. Sinai Foundation, Cleveland Foundation and professional advisors, the agency opens Monarch School for Autism with 12 students. Today, the school serves over 100 students, from preschoolers to young adults, from Ohio and beyond. It is now one of many programs offered by Monarch Center for Autism, which includes adult residence and therapeutic treatment, transitional education, and vocational and life skills training.
2002 Bellefaire JCB executives create the administrative oversight company Wingspan Care Group. Partner agencies include Bellefaire JCB, Applewood Centers and Monarch Teaching Technologies (MTT) — a spin-off, for-profit technology company that produces educational software for children with autism.

Today, Bellefaire JCB is among the nation’s largest, most experienced child welfare agencies providing a variety behavioral health, substance abuse, education and prevention services to approximately 21,700 youth and their families each year through its more than 25 programs, including:

  • Outpatient and School-based Counseling
  • Homeless and Missing Youth Program
  • Foster Care
  • Prevention and Early Intervention (SAY – Social Advocates for Youth)
  • Domestic and Hague-accredited International Adoption
  • Residential Treatment including Crisis Stabilization, Drug and Alcohol Treatment, and Transitional and Independent Living

Ireland: Adoptee Rights NOW!

Guest Post by Mary Lawlor and Paul Redmond

by Michael Nugent on August 30, 2012

Mary Lawlor was given up for adoption in 1960. On the 12th of July this year, at fifty-two years of age, she learned that she has a brother. He was born on the 18th of July in 1963 and shipped to America in 1965. Mary is now trying to find him, and bring him into her life.

Paul Redmond is an adoptee born in Castlepollard, and he organizes an annual trip and tour of Castlepollard for fellow adoptees. He is a researcher and writer, and he and Mary campaign in Ireland for the rights of the adopted community.

Mary and Paul have been meeting with the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin about the question of church records of adoptees. They have also been lobbying politicians, and have launched a new website Adoption Rights Now and a new Facebook campaign page. They have written this guest post about the history of the Irish adoption industry, and the demands of Adoption Rights Now.

What if black people were not entitled to their birth certificates? What if gay people were not entitled to their medical records? What if people with special needs were eligible for testing with experimental drugs? What if babies from the Traveling community who died were surrendered for medical research and dissection for training purposes?

Are you shocked at such politically incorrect language and extreme right wing ideology? Don’t worry; just replace the words black, gay, special needs and traveler with ‘adopted’ and that’s perfectly acceptable for the 50,000 adoptees living in Ireland past and present.

50,000 people classified as second class citizens and ‘illegitimate’. 50,000 Irish citizens denied basic human and civil rights contrary to the Human Rights conventions of the European Union and the United Nations.

The history of the Irish Adoption Industry is the last dirty little secret of the darkest depths of the once fabled and glorified holy Catholic Ireland.You doubt that it was an industry? That it was a machine? Don’t.

Babies and little children were exported like livestock. They were rented out for drug experiments like poor defenceless lab rats. They were condemned to death by the willful withholding or denial of proper food, of medical treatment, of medical equipment from their terrified mothers, who far too often had already been the victims of rape or incest.

From 1948 to 1973, at least 2,132 babies and young children were effectively sold to rich American Catholics by Irish nuns. And this happened with the assistance of the then Minister for External Affairs, one Eamon De Valera, who illegally issued passports on the orders of Archbishop John McQuaid. This was nothing less than child trafficking on an industrial scale.

Experimental trials

From 1960 to 1973, in the three Sacred Heart-run Mother and Baby Homes, there were at least four trials of experimental and/or modified vaccines carried out by a state employed professor of medicine and a doctor working working on behalf of the Borris Wellcome Foundation, which is now a part of GlaxoSmithKline. These trials were carried out on control groups of babies who were as little as eighteen months old, and who had been held in Mother and Baby Homes instead of being adopted.

These monstrous trials were in direct contravention of the Irish Constitution, of the international CODEX guidelines and of the Hippocratic oath. For thirteen years the State, its religious orders and the Borris Wellcome Foundation conspired to turn between 200 and 300 babies and children into nothing more than human lab rats in the three Mother and Baby Homes and other institutions.

Amazingly, after these trials had been conducted, the conspirators just walked away. And heartbreakingly, those babies and children were then adopted without their new parents ever being informed of the trials those babies and children had been subjected to, and without any kind of monitoring or after-care.

Donation of bodies

Between 1940 and 1965, from the fourth major M&B Home, St. Patrick’s, and its sister hospital, St. Kevin’s in Dublin, the bodies of at least 460 dead babies were ‘donated’ for routine dissection practise by medical students and/or research, to all of the major medical teaching institutions in the State, including Trinity College, UCD Medical School and The College of Surgeons.

In both the cases of the vaccine trials and the ‘donation’ of bodies, consent was neither sought from nor granted by either the natural or adoptive parents involved. Nor was the truth of what happened to their children, while they lived or after they died, ever revealed to them.

High mortality rates

Most shocking and disturbing of all is the high mortality rate for the babies of single mothers both inside and outside the high walls of the adoption machine. It is in these horrific mortality figures that the influence and the consequences of the Church’s iron grip on Irish civil society can be most clearly seen.

Since 1922 the mortality rates for babies of single mothers has run considerably higher than the national average. In the years 1923 to 1929 inclusive, infant mortality rates for ‘illegitimate’ babies ran at about FIVE times the national average for ‘legitimate’ babies. In 1930, 60 of the 120 babies born in Sean Ross Abbey died. And during the 1930s, mortality rates ran at approximately FOUR times the national average.

By 1948, John Cunningham, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at UCD, stated that the annual national infant mortality rates were 47 per 1000 babies born within marriage (4.7%), and 147 babies born outside marriage (14.7%), over THREE times higher. Interestingly, he also stated that this was not a problem.

In the three Sacred Heart run M&B Homes, there are so-called ‘ Angel Plots ‘ which contain the bodies of between 3,000 and 4,000 babies buried without birth certificates, death certificates, baptisms, names, or even the most simple dignity of a coffin. These are unmarked or barely marked graves.

Political reaction

Fianna Fail did nothing in all of their years in power during the Celtic Tiger to even attempt to correct this massive injustice which their founder, Eamon De Valera, helped inflict on tens of thousands of innocent Irish citizens.

During their long, long spell in opposition, the now Ministers Francis Fitzgerald and Alan Shatter promised the sun, the moon and the stars to the adopted community, but have completely failed to act on, let alone deliver on, their many promises since assuming office.

Adoption Rights Now!

As adopted people, we have little or no rights. We are determined to change that. For us, for Mary’s brother, and for the souls of each little baby in those unmarked graves. And we are asking you, the person reading this, to help us change this terrible situation. We, just like you, just like everyone else, have the right to know who we are and where we come from.

Please step forward and help us, and 52,000 others like us. We need volunteers who will help us to break free from this prison we have been trapped in, simply by the circumstances of our birth.

We are demanding

  1. That all adoption records are opened immediately in line with international best practice.
  2. A full public inquiry into the vicious treatment of mothers and children, and the consequent high mortality rates, in Government and Catholic run institutions in Ireland since the foundation of the state in 1922.
  3. The granting of minority status to all adoptees.
  4. All Angels Plots in former Mother & Baby homes and Magdalene Laundries to handed over to a trust committee of adoptees and natural mothers.

How can you help? You can contact your local and national politicians, and members of the Catholic clergy, and tell them about our rights and our demands. You can write to the newspapers, ring up radio stations. You can share links to this article on the Internet.

You can join our Facebook campaign page.

You can also help us to get signatures for our petition seeking immediate action by the Irish Government and the Catholic church.

For more details, check our website Adoption Rights Now! or email marylawlor87 (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Los Angeles Orphans Asylums

ca 1900s view of the los angeles orphan asylum in boyle heights

(ca. 1900)* – The Los Angeles Orphanage at 917 South Boyle Avenue, southwest corner of Boyle Avenue at Stephenson Avenue (now Whittier Boulevard) in Boyle Heights. The orphanage is a five-story, brick, L-shaped building with dormer windows on the facade and a tower at the entrance that is flanked by newly-planted date palm trees. Steps lead to an arched entryway at the bottom of the tower. Several chimneys sit atop the roof.

The girl’s orphange and school was established in 1856 by six Sisters of Charity nuns from Emmitsburg, Maryland, the motherhouse in the United States. They selected a house with vineyard and orchard belonging to B. D. Wilson for $8,000. This gave the orphanage an income from wine grapes and a supply of fresh fruits and vegetables. The 917 South Boyle Avenue site opened in 1890 on twelve acres and remained open until it was condemned in 1953 and the orphanage moved to Rosemead.*

For over sixty years the facility served thousands of orphaned children in Los Angeles. Concerns over structural integrity came about in the early 1930s when construction crews blasting the hillside next to the asylum for the extension of Sixth Street weakened the massive structure’s foundations. While the building was used for classes during the day, children and staff slept at the basement at St. Vincent’s Hospital in the evenings.

The damage to the building, as well as the notorious freeway construction projects that controversially carved through much of Boyle Heights, led the Daughters to abandon the site and move the facility to Rosemead in the San Gabriel Valley. From 1953, the facility has operated as Maryvale, but has been reconfigured as a residential home for girls from ages six to seventeen. There are also adjunct facilities in El Monte and Duarte.

More on California history: HERE

Medical Kidnapping? Billion Dollar Adoption Business



We continue our series on the “Business of Medical Kidnapping,” which addresses the question, “why is this happening?” Our previous articles in this series:

The Medical Kidnapping Business: Bilking Medicaid

Medical Kidnapping Business: Judges Skirting the Law for Federal Funds

Steve Isham addresses the topic of the multi-billion dollar adoption business.

As we have previously reported at Health Impact News, fertility rates in the United States are at an all-time low. As John P. Thomas has reported in his article, Are GMO Foods, Vaccines, and Big Pharma Producing an Infertile Generation?, fertility rates are plummeting:

  1. The U.S. fertility rate fell to another record low in 2012, with 63.0 births per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44 years old, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s down slightly from the previous low of 63.2 in 2011. It marked the fifth year in a row the U.S. birth rate has declined, and the lowest rate on record since the government started tracking the fertility rate in 1909.
  2. For five years now, America’s teen birth rate has plummeted at an unprecedented rate, falling faster and faster. Between 2007 and 2013, the number of babies born to teens annually fell by 38.4 percent, according to research firm Demographic Intelligence. This drop occurred in tandem with steep declines in the abortion rate.
  3. A few years ago, statistics from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put the number of women having difficulty conceiving at approximately 10 percent—roughly 1 in 10. Now, using results from this newest survey [reported in 2013], that number appears to be closer to 16 percent—1 in every 6 couples. (Full Article.)

Add to this the growing list of states that are legalizing gay marriages adding more couples unable to conceive children, and it is easy to see that the adoption business is growing due to increased demand.

Much of what Steve uncovers in this article will apply to children taken away from families for any reason, not simply issues related to “medical kidnapping,” such as being charged with “medical abuse” for simply questioning a doctor or wanting to seek a second opinion regarding medical treatment for one’s child.

In future articles we will report more about the financial incentives of the medical industry to remove custody of a child from the parents, thereby gaining access to the vast amount of financial resources available via Medicaid to purchase drugs for these children.

Many reports have already been published documenting how children who are wards of the State are taking many more prescription drugs than those living with their families. Foster parents or parents of adopted children are often required to administer these drugs whether they agree or not.  The medical institution also has the legal right to use these children in drug experiments.


Adoption: It is about the Money!

By Steven R. Isham M.A., L.B.S.W.
Special to Health Impact News

Child ‘protection’ is one of the biggest businesses in the country. We spend $12 billion a year on it.

A recent CDC study, The Economic Burden of Child Maltreatment in the United States and Implications for Prevention, found the total lifetime estimated financial costs associated with just one year of cases associated with child protection services is approximately $124 billion. [1]

Arizona Leads the Nation in Children Removed from Homes and Sent to Foster Care and Adoption

kidnapped babies in offices

The State of Arizona has increased the percentage of kids in out-of-home placement by almost 50% between 9/30/2007 and 9/30/2012. That is 20% higher than the next closest state, Oregon, who increased only 20% in those five years. Nationwide 41 states actually lowered the percentage of children in out-of-home placements. Arizona has recently passed the mark of more than 16,000 children in out-of-home placements and is still increasing this trend. [2]

Why would Arizona be continuing to take more children than ever before and adopt out so many of these children to other families? Is it about the money?

Certainly, “yes”, the state government and the state economy needs every business opportunity it can achieve, and the taking of children by the state and adopting these children to others is a financial windfall for the State of Arizona, the state budget and the economy. It is easily a billion dollar business, and growing every day in Arizona.

According to Wall St., Arizona is the 45th worst run state in the nation, has a poverty rate of 18.6%, the 9th highest in the nation, and a 2013 unemployment rate of 8.0%, 12th highest in the country. [3]

So why does Arizona lead the nation in percentage of children removed from their parents’ homes?

  1. Money: Federal Financial Incentives for taking and keeping children. ($72,000.00 Base)
  2. Adoption Bonuses: $4,000.00 to $6,000.00+ per each time [4]
  3. Adoption Subsidies: Even after adoption is completed until 22 years of age
  4. Physicians: Completing research or hiding medical malpractice mistakes
  5. Hospitals: Completing research or hiding medical malpractice mistakes
  6. Pharmaceutical Companies: Endless pool of test subjects
  7. Employment: Hundreds if not thousands of jobs depend on the state taking these children, especially since they are already built into the state budget now.

Are Arizona Children Entering Foster Care and Adoption Moving on to Better Lives?

So after millions of dollars in services, thousands of employees from hundreds of businesses, both state and federal, including in-state and out-of-state experts, are the children being protected ending up in safe and secure environments? Are the children being treated better or worse in state custody?

A reasonable taxpayer would assume that children are going from a bad environment to a good environment, a sick environment to a healing environment. We would assume they are going to a new environment totally void of any more suffering or trauma, safe from abuse or neglect of any kind, right?


Some of these children have suffered more trauma by being taken by CPS than they ever suffered in their own homes. Being taken from your own home and placed in another home with strangers while often not having any clue why, is extremely traumatizing. The impact is just like that of an illegal kidnapping; but in these cases the kidnapping is totally legal.

Or, imagine being told that your mother tried to harm you when in fact nothing ever happened. Purely speculative areas that are not researched but are based on diagnoses like Munchausen Syndrome By Proxy (MSBP) and others are often made up signs and symptoms to qualify the child for a disability that can receive massive amounts of federal funding.

Nationwide, Statistics Show Children Entering Foster Homes Suffer More AFTER They Leave Their Families

According to Cornell University, about 68% of all child protective cases “do not involve child maltreatment.” [4]

According to the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect (NCCAN) in Washington, the calculated average is for every 1 abused child removed from an abusive home, there are 17 children removed from loving non-offending homes nationwide. [5]

Take a look at statistics of children who are removed from their families by CPS:

Number of Cases per 100,000 children in the United States. These numbers come from The National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect (NCCAN) in Washington D. C. [5]

Children in CPS custody:

  • Physical Abuse (160)
  • Sexual Abuse (112)
  • Neglect (410)
  • Medical Neglect (14)
  • Fatalities (6.4)

Children in Parent Custody:

  • Physical Abuse (59)
  • Sexual Abuse (13)
  • Neglect (241)
  • Medical Neglect (12)
  • Fatalities (1.5)

A child in CPS custody is:

  • Almost three times more likely to be physically abused in CPS custody than at home
  • Over eight times more likely to be sexually abused in CPS custody than at home
  • Almost two times as likely to be neglected in CPS custody than at home
  • Almost equally likely to be medically neglected (How can that be in CPS custody?)
  • Almost five times more likely to die in CPS custody than at home

Perpetrators of Maltreatment

More Children in the Adoption System = More Money for the State

Financial Opportunities for the State of Arizona and Economic Growth; Stability

AZ Economic Opportunities

One local hospital in Arizona was billing the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (Medicaid) over one million dollars a year on one child, but then the same physicians/hospitals were testifying in “kiddie court” there was nothing wrong with the child. The Mom must have done something? The true medical condition of the child was never given to the judge!

How do Child Protection Services Pick which Children to Take?


Poverty is the single best predictor of child abuse and neglect. According to one frequently cited federal study, children in families earning below $15,000 a year are 22 times as likely to be considered maltreated as kids in families with incomes above $30,000. These numbers are readily available through documents CPS Investigators have about AHCCCS (Medicaid) [7] It is also well known that these parents cannot afford private attorneys to represent them and fight to get their children back. They must rely on court-appointed attorneys who are generally quick to encourage them to settle with the State, and lose all custody of their children.


There seems to be a trend in this area as certain Arizona hospitals have relationships with pharmaceutical companies and there seems to be a parallel between CPS reports, the genetics of the child, the medical conditions of the child, Arizona elected officials, and the research of the pharmaceutical company. The numbers are difficult to find, but apparently some parents have found their children in those research studies.

Medical Malpractice

There are several cases where there is no evidence whatsoever of any neglect, physical, emotional, or sexual abuse and CPS is called by the physician or hospital involved. In many of these cases there is specific evidence and expert testimony, from nationally recognized experts, of medical mistakes or care below the community standards. Interestingly, CPS has never done an investigation of many of these cases and yet severs the rights of the parent as quickly as possible. “Bazinga” the medical malpractice disappears, saving hospitals hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements, legal fees, and increased liability insurance costs.

Federal Government Incentives

The United States Federal Government, through an array of laws and grants, provides billions of dollars in incentives to states to take children from their parents. Arizona takes more percentage wise than any other state.


People who do not have children and want children create a market for children. Where is there an endless availability of children? Child Protective Services! The younger and healthier the child the more adoptable that child will be. Younger and healthier children are significantly more adoptable. A reasonable person might conclude the demand is so high that there could possibly be a connection between this demand and the increase in the taking of children before they ever leave the hospital.

The Funds?

It is easier to build a round pizza puzzle with 1,000 pieces, than find the exact money a state gets per child from the moment CPS takes that child and then from month to month. The amount most consistently quoted and spoken about is $6,000.00 per month.

“For instance, in the case of foster care, the present reimbursement to state and local government for each child taken into foster care is approximately $6000/month. Yet the foster care provider (the foster parent) receives only somewhere around $600/month. Allowing about the same for administrative costs, each child in foster care is worth about $5000/month; that’s pure profit on the bottom line!” [8]

On October 11, 2014, Arizona Central reported the following:

“Arizona had the second-largest increase in the nation over the decade, adding 7,296 children to Texas’ 8,294 (which has 4x the population of Arizona). There were 15,751 foster kids in Arizona at the end of March, according to the latest numbers from the state.” (Data given on March 2013) [9]

Assuming these numbers are correct, and the accepted dollar amount is correct:

The Arizona State child welfare and adoption services would have generated for Arizona approximately 94.5 million dollars a month or 1.134 billion dollars a year.

AZ CPS Demographics

Conclusion: American Families Under Attack in Government-Sponsored Children for Profit Adoption Practices

Most American’s find it nearly impossible to believe that our own Government, both state and federal, would allow some scheme this obscene to be perpetrated against the American family unit and our precious children. And yet, there is so much evidence that something perverse is happening that it begs for an independent audit by the United States Department of Health and Human Services and the United States Department of Justice.

A few questions that I believe should be addressed during both investigations:

  1. How much combined funding is each state getting for each child?
  2. What is the amount of Medicaid fraud by state in relation to these children?
  3. How do race, poverty, medical research, medical malpractice, federal government incentives, and adoptions impact the number of children taken by each state?
  4. Why have the states or federal government not researched if the current system even works to do anything but pay for itself?
  5. How many children in the Foster Care system, as it currently exists, end up with criminal records, prison sentences, post-traumatic stress disorder from Foster Care, and suicide attempts and deaths?

About the Author

Steven R. Isham has educated, advocated, and fought for children and families since 1975, going on 40 years. His experience spans education, special education, school administration, behavioral health, juvenile justice, developmental disabilities, curriculum development, coaching, author of a book on Child and Family Advocacy and service to others throughout his career.



1. Cost of Child Abuse and Neglect Rival Other Major Public Health Problems – The Center for Disease Control (CDC)

2. Child Protective Services (CPS) Oversight Committee – Overview Presentation – October 17, 2013 – Arizona Department of Economic Security

3. The Best and Worst Run States in America: A Survey of All 50 – By Alexander E.M. Hess, Thomas C. Frohlich, Alexander Kent and Ashley C. Allen – December 3, 2014 6:20 pm EST

The Best and Worst Run States in America: A Survey of All 50 – 24/7 Wall St.

4. The National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect (NCCAN) in Washington.

5. –

6. Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections – March 2009 Performance Audit –

7. Many Arizona foster children living far from home – By Mary K. Reinhart – Sept. 1, 2012 11:35 PM – The Republic | –

8. On Child Protective Services, Part 4: Follow the Money – Posted on May 8, 2013 by Michael Minkoff –

9. Number of kids in Arizona’s foster-care system up – Miranda Rivers, Cronkite News 9:44 p.m. MST October 11, 2014 –

10. Demographics: Child Welfare Summary: Arizona: 2009, 2010,

Just more sickness in the land of the psychopaths. And you didn’t even touch on the number of CPS kidnapped kids that get shipped out to pedophile rings – whoops – I mean go missing every year.

Claudia Corrigan D’Arcy January 5, 2015

Adoption was a 13 Billion Dollar industry in the USA in 2013. And yes, the new same sex marriage laws and growing infertility rates ALL increase the demand for children.. the younger and whiter the better.
There is same serious tax fraud going on all over the industry.. from the state incentives for CPS removal which is documented here to the double payments of birthmother medical expenses paid by both the state and adoptive parents.

What people don’t want to realize is that CPS removal isn’t what happens to “others” or “bad people”; no one is safe anymore. Fathers’ routinely get denied their rights to their children via adoption, mothers are lied to every day to convince them to relinquish their children, and often, doctors, hospitals, social workers, CPC’s and the adoption agencies and lawyers are all working in tandem. Meanwhile, we all want to think that the parents targeted must have “done something” to deserve this, but they are just like everyone else. No one ants to see that until it’s YOUR child getting sold off and you realize that there is nothing you can do!

The American Academy of Pediatrics states that ALL children adopted have trauma. Adoptees have 4 times higher a risk of suicide and they are over represented in both the prison and mental health industry by as high as 80%. So much for “better life.” Our own government is separating families and destroying our future.

%d bloggers like this: