US governor signs adoption law banning re-homing

2015-04-08 21:43
Pen. ( <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com">Shutterstock</a>)

Pen. ( Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Little Rock - Spurred by the disclosure that a lawmaker transferred custody of children he had adopted to a family where one of the children was sexually abused, Arkansas' governor on Monday signed legislation barring the practice known as "re-homing."

The new statute signed by Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, forbids parents from assigning custody of children they adopt to another household, except close relatives, without court approval. The crime would be a felony punishable by a prison sentence and fines.

The Donaldson Adoption Institute in New York, which tracks such legislation, said Wisconsin and Louisiana have also banned re-homing. Florida and Ohio are weighing legislation to restrict or ban the practice, it said.

The issue arose in Arkansas when it was revealed that State Representative Justin Harris and his wife had adopted two sisters, aged 3 and 5, in 2013 only to assign them to an employee of the childcare centre he owns when the children failed to fit into to their new home.

Harris' employee, a former youth minister, pleaded guilty last year to sexually abusing the older girl. He is now serving a 40-year prison sentence.

The sisters were removed from the home and are now living with another adoptive family outside Arkansas.

Representative David Meeks, himself an adoptive parent and an author of the new law, said what happened to the older sister was deeply disturbing.

Harris, a Republican, refused calls by Democrats to resign his seat in the Arkansas House but did leave his leadership position on two key committees, one of them overseeing state services to children.

Harris said he continued to receive state payments after he had re-homed the two girls but said he relayed the money to their new parents.

Read more on:    us

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.