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Lilypie Kids birthday Ticker
Friday, July 28, 2006
Will You Help?
I'm home and happy to be here. Isn't it funny how we miss our beds? I really think you have to be 18 and happy to be in your own place for the first time to enjoy living in a dorm. I'll share more about that later. First, I have an important request to make of you. Whether you are family, friend, or a stranger who stumbled here accidently, please consider helping on this issue.

Part of the adoption process requires receiving pre-approval from the USCIS (U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services, formally INS). This approval is good for 18 months. In the past, this was sufficient to complete the adoption and return home. Chinese adoptions have slowed to the point that families are having to re-do the paperwork for this approval. Why is this bad? For many reasons, but I'll stick to two.

1. Completing this form requires submitting updated copies of our birth certificates, marriage certificate, physicals, financial statements, and updating our homestudy, which requires an additional fee to a social worker. By the time this is finished, it can mean an additional and unexpected cost of up to $2000.

2. USCIS offices are located throughout the country. While the rare few are extremely efficient, the majority are taking 2-4 months to process these applications. Some have taken as much as six months. Since these time frames can lengthen or shorten without warning due to internal issues, it's a guessing game as to when to begin the process. Guessing wrong means either spending the money unnecessarily as an extention isn't needed, or having to delay accepting our child while we wait for this process to complete.

Congresswoman Heather Wilson of New Mexico has sponsored a bill (H.R. 5888), the Helping Families Adopt Orphan Act. This bill would extend the validity of the I-171H (pre-approval) to a minimum of two years.

Please contact your representatives and ask for their support in passing this bill. Please also ask them to make this retroactive so that those of us who are currently waiting are included.

I am including a link to Heather Wilson's page explaining the Act and to a page that will help you locate your representative.

This only takes minutes of your time. Please help us out with this cause.

Helping Families Adopt Orphan Act

Find your representative!

P.S. I'm delaying changing the blog address so that I don't lose anyone who might have found this site. I'm hoping that anyone who visits here will respond to this request.

ETA: If you are going to send an email, letter, or make a call on this issue, please let me know. You can leave a comment here, click on the email (talk to me) link, or use my regular email. I'd like to keep track of which representatives have been asked to help. Thanks again!



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