Truth and Reconciliation for the Adoption Community of Korea

Many thanks to Living in Color for posting information about a new initiative: Truth and Reconciliation for the Adoption Community of Korea.

It was heartening to read TRACK's introduction and see so many of the things that we talk about here online pulled into a cohesive approach to identifying past and current Korean adoption practices that violate the rights of adoptees and their families, Korean and adoptive. I mean, it doesn't get much clearer than this (Edited 3-2-09 to note that the original post no longer exists at the new TRACK website):
8 Common Irregularities in Adoption from Korea

1. Unclear relinquishment - parent did not relinquish under real name, a person other than the parent relinquished, only one parent relinquished, the child was relinquished for domestic but NOT international adoption, or the signature on the relinquishment form appears to be forged.

2. Kidnappings within the family, particularly by paternal relative and grandmother.

3. Misrepresentation of child to adoptive parents and Western adoption agency (such as age, social history, medical history, marital status of mother).

4. Contradictions in the adoption file of the same child. Contradictions may be found going from Korean-language record to Korean-language record (from police to orphanage to agency, or intra-agency), or going from Korean-language record to English-language record (or other Western language).

5. Kidnapping by orphanage - the Korean parent came looking and they were told that the child was not there, or had died.

6. Hojuk forgery - an orphan hojuk made to replace the child's real hojuk. The fake orphan hojuk was used for adoption.

7. Citizenship forgery - the child was recorded as having been sent to a different adoptive country than they really were, and were recorded as having gained the citizenship of the wrong country.

8. Identity forgery - the child was switched for another child who was not able to be sent at the time the adoption was scheduled.
These things happened, and still happen. Thank you, TRACK, for shedding light on them in a way that the world won't be able to ignore.


shoed contessa said…
It's so important to know about - and then to erradicate - these problems in the adoption system. I'm encouraged that people are working to shed light on them.

One thing I've been thinking a lot about is what we should be looking for and asking about as pre-adoptive (pre-referral) parents. I'd like to appeal to you in particular to share your ideas, if you wouldn't mind, because I know you've posted about the fact that you didn't question what you were told and wish now you had. What should people in my position be asking? I tried to do my due diligence on our agency vis-a-vis ethics before we chose it, and I plan to try to get as much detailed information as possible about our future child's birth parents and their circumstances from the Korean agency, but do you have any thoughts about what else specifically we should be asking? What red flags should we be looking for?

Thanks for any suggestions you can provide.
Anonymous said…
Thanks for the posting. This is Ross, co-founder and Director of Operations for TRACK. While its been a year since we first started, we've built quite a network. Not only are there adoptees on our staff, we have a dedicated group of Koreans helping us develope our contacts and network.

The best way to support us, besides becoming a member (please see our website at is to spread the word about us.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me. Otherwise you can keep updated on our website or Jane's website.

Director of Operations
Margie said…
Hi, Ross, sorry for the VERY delayed response - I'm happy to help!

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