Adoption numbers reach record low
ADOPTIONS in Australia have fallen to their lowest levels since official records began in the 1970s.
Figures from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare show there were just 412 adoptions in 2009/10, down from 441 in the previous financial year.
The number is a dramatic fall since the 1970s, when more than 8000 children a year were adopted.
But the low numbers represent the relatively stable rate of adoption since the late 1990s, which have remained at between 400 to 600 children a year.
In 2009/10, more than half were children adopted from overseas and under five years old.
Most came from Asian countries including the Philippines, China and South Korea.
Ethiopia was the most common birth country for children adopted from outside of Asia.
Australian children represented 46 per cent of all adoptions, and a majority of adoptions were made by family members or carers already known to the child.
All of these “known” adoptions were children over 10 years old.