Black Babies Are The Least Expensive To Adopt In The U.S.

June 28, 2013  |  

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Even when it comes to adopting a child, the capitalistic notion of “supply and demand” is applicable. And a child’s price tag in the adoption market indicates which ethnicity is more desirable. White children are more expensive with a $30,000 price tag, while biracial and Black children cost about $25,000 and $20,000 respectively, reports Jezebel.

A study that surveyed adoptive parents between 2004 and 2009 found that there were stronger preferences for girls and children who are not African American. Despite the fact that Americans generally prefers boys, prospective parents favor girls because they believe female adopted children are more socially tame than males.

The same study shows that an African-American baby is seven times less likely to attract the attention of a prospective parent compared to a non-Black baby. Although the cost discrepancy based on a child’s race seems discriminatory, research shows that the differences stem from who’s adopting.

According to the U.S. department of Health and Human Services, 63 percent of the children in foster care were adopted by White parents while only 27 percent were adopted by Black parents. As Whites are the parents that are primarily interested in adopting, their main preference for their prospective children is making sure there’s a resemblance. They want children who “can potentially pass as their biological children,” the study added.

Caryn Lantz, who has adopted a child, noted that during the process, she remembered a social worker telling her that the process would move more rapidly if she was open to “adopting an African-American child.” NPR adds, “adopting biracial, Latino, Asian or Caucasian children could be a slower process… because there were more parents waiting for them.”

Lantz was upset to hear this because she felt as if these adoption agencies were segregating children and pricing them based on race. Despite being a Caucasian woman, Lantz agreed to adopt two African-American boys.

The decreased price is one of the strategies being used to increase the appeal of Black children.  Also, in 2009, the federal government funded an ad campaign to “encourage black families to adopt, in hopes that they’d be more likely to take home children who looked like them,” Jezebel added.

One woman, according to Jezebel, made the decision to adopt an African-American son. She understands the different price tags on children based on race, but she stated, “My son was cheaper than if he’d been white. How will he feel, if he even finds out about that?

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