Legislation set to take effect in April aims to improve transparency and speed up the placement of children put up for adoption or foster care in Greece.
“We want to lift the shroud of mystery that often surrounds adoptions in Greece,” Alternate Social Solidarity Minister Theano Fotiou said.
Changes aim to create an integrated system for adults who are interested in adopting or providing foster care for a child, as well as children who are in the care of institutions and maternity clinics, and those who are being given up for adoption by their biological parents.
Most importantly, the law sets up a national register of children up for adoption and prospective parents. Candidate parents will be able to log into an integrated platform to submit their adoption request, instead of making separate applications to the relevant agencies in Athens and Thessaloniki.
Subsequent reviews of prospective adopters are expected to last three months. Officials expect that under the new system an adoption match should take no more than 12 months after the first application. Failed candidates will be able to repeat the process after three years. “The law was designed on the basis of society’s real needs,” Fotiou said.
The current adoption waiting time in Greece is an average six years, a major challenge for interested parties.