Julie Morgan, the Deputy Minister for Social Services has made a personal apology for the suffering of those affected by the historical practice of forced adoption in the 1950, 60s and 70s.
Speaking at the Big Adoption Conversation event Julie Morgan said:
Adoption has undergone some major reforms over the past 40 years, to put children at the forefront of decisions. The views of adopters and adopted children and young people are vital in helping us develop our policy, practices and legislation.
Whilst forced adoption practices predate devolution in Wales, they have a lasting legacy on all those who experienced them – for both the parents and the children. I want to put on record my profound sympathy to all those who have been affected by historic forced adoption.
We cannot change what has happened, but I can provide assurances that adoption legislation and practices have been significantly strengthened since and we will strive to provide as much support as we can.
To all the victims, I would like to convey my deepest sympathy and regret that due to society failing you, you had to endure such appalling historical practices. For this I am truly sorry.
The personal apology comes after the Joint Committee on Human Rights published its recommendations following an inquiry to understand the experiences of unmarried women whose children were adopted between 1949 and 1976 in England and Wales.
Julie Morgan continued:
I welcome the inquiry’s recommendations, which Welsh Government and the National Adoption Service are carefully considering to see what improvements can be made in Wales.
I encourage anyone affected by forced adoption to contact The National Adoption Service which will be able to signpost individuals to other services including peer-support and advocacy groups, Welsh Government funded post-adoption support services, and other long-standing non-government service providers.