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COLLECTION OF DATA RELATING TO ADOPTION AND FOSTER CARE[239]

Sec479[42 U.S.C. 679] (a)(1) Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this subsection[240], the Secretary shall establish an Advisory Committee on Adoption and Foster Care Information (in this section referred to as the “Advisory Committee”) to study the various methods of establishing, administering, and financing a system for the collection of data with respect to adoption and foster care in the United States.

(2) The study required by paragraph (1) shall—

(A) identify the types of data necessary to—

(i) assess (on a continuing basis) the incidence, characteristics, and status of adoption and foster care in the United States, and

(ii) develop appropriate national policies with respect to adoption and foster care;

(B) evaluate the feasibility and appropriateness of collecting data with respect to privately arranged adoptions and adoptions arranged through private agencies without assistance from public child welfare agencies;

(C) assess the validity of various methods of collecting data with respect to adoption and foster care; and

(D) evaluate the financial and administrative impact of implementing each such method.

(3) Not later than October 1, 1987, the Advisory Committee shall submit to the Secretary and the Congress a report setting forth the results of the study required by paragraph (1) and evaluating and making recommendations with respect to the various methods of establishing, administering, and financing a system for the collection of data with respect to adoption and foster care in the United States.

(4)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B), the membership and organization of the Advisory Committee shall be determined by the Secretary.

(B) The membership of the Advisory Committee shall include representatives of—

(i) private, nonprofit organizations with an interest in child welfare (including organizations that provide foster care and adoption services),

(ii) organizations representing State and local governmental agencies with responsibility for foster care and adoption services,

(iii) organizations representing State and local governmental agencies with responsibility for the collection of health and social statistics,

(iv) organizations representing State and local judicial bodies with jurisdiction over family law,

(v) Federal agencies responsible for the collection of health and social statistics, and

(vi) organizations and agencies involved with privately arranged or international adoptions.

(5) After the date of the submission of the report required by paragraph (3), the Advisory Committee shall cease to exist.

(b)(1)(A) Not later than July 1, 1988, the Secretary shall submit to the Congress a report that—

(i) proposes a method of establishing, administering, and financing a system for the collection of data relating to adoption and foster care in the United States,

(ii) evaluates the feasibility and appropriateness of collecting data with respect to privately arranged adoptions and adoptions arranged through private agencies without assistance from public child welfare agencies, and

(iii) evaluates the impact of the system proposed under clause (i) on the agencies with responsibility for implementing it.

(B) The report required by subparagraph (A) shall—

(i) specify any changes in law that will be necessary to implement the system proposed under subparagraph (A)(i), and

(ii) describe the type of system that will be implemented under paragraph (2) in the absence of such changes.

(2) Not later than December 31, 1988, the Secretary shall promulgate final regulations providing for the implementation of—

(A) the system proposed under paragraph (1)(A)(i), or

(B) if the changes in law specified pursuant to paragraph (1)(B)(i) have not been enacted, the system described in paragraph (1)(B)(ii).

Such regulations shall provide for the full implementation of the system not later than October 1, 1991.

(c) Any data collection system developed and implemented under this section shall—

(1) avoid unnecessary diversion of resources from agencies responsible for adoption and foster care;

(2) assure that any data that is collected is reliable and consistent over time and among jurisdictions through the use of uniform definitions and methodologies;

(3) provide comprehensive national information with respect to—

(A) the demographic characteristics of adoptive and foster children and their biological and adoptive or foster parents,

(B) the status of the foster care population (including the number of children in foster care, length of placement, type of placement, availability for adoption, and goals for ending or continuing foster care),

(C) the number and characteristics of—

(i) children placed in or removed from foster care,

(ii) children adopted or with respect to whom adoptions have been terminated, and

(iii) children placed in foster care outside the State which has placement and care responsibility, and

(D) the extent and nature of assistance provided by Federal, State, and local adoption and foster care programs and the characteristics of the children with respect to whom such assistance is provided; and

(4) utilize appropriate requirements and incentives to ensure that the system functions reliably throughout the United States.


[239]  See Vol. II, P.L. 99-509, §9442, with respect to the maternal and child health and adoption clearinghouse.

[240]  October 21, 1986. [P.L. 99-509, §9443; 100 Stat. 2073]